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Saturday, November 17, 2007

University of Toledo Alumni Association: A Force or A Farce?

You're familiar with alumni associations, right? If not, read this Roland's Ramblings entry.
As of late I have been having second thoughts about the University of Toledo Alumni Association. This makes the third episode in my life in which I have had some major less-than-satisfactory experiences with the UT Alumni Association.
The first time was many, many years ago when I was a young man in my twenties. I had bought a large life insurance policy and designated the University of Toledo as a beneficiary of a certain percentage.
Apparently, that wasn't enough for them because the Alumni Association continuously and constantly was soliciting me to make financial donations, something that has continued to this very day.
The second occurrence was some years ago after I had served on the University of Toledo Alumni Association Arts and Sciences Affiliate Committee. I had spent a lot of volunteer time on the committee planning and implementing a wide variety of activities. Besides committee meetings, I provided a large amount of volunteer time for many activities. For example, I remember serving juice, coffee, and donuts under a reception tent on more than one occasion at commencement ceremonies for Arts and Sciences graduates and their families. After a couple years, there was a sudden cessation of the Arts and Science Affiliate committee. There was No advance notice from UT Alumni Association paid staff and no explanation. It just stopped meeting. After some time had passed, I made an inquiry or two. I was met with the response that I should lobby UT administration to reactivate the affiliate.
Now comes my third less-than-satisfactory experience. For the past five years, I have had a winter home in Mesa Arizona. One of my brothers and his family are full-time residents there. My sister-in-law is President of the Phoenix Chapter of the University of Toledo Alumni Association. She recruited me to be part of that chapter. The staff of UT Alumni Association actually organize and promote all the activities. They have not been stellar in my opinion, but so-so. So, enough of that --- let me cut to the chase.
Error after error after error has been made by the Alumni Association staff in the communications of the very latest activity. Rather than telling you about it, I will just copy and paste some e-mail communication (most of it by me) that has been exchanged on this. Read it and judge for yourself about the competency of the University of Toledo Alumni Association staff.

Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2007 15:23:16 -0700 (PDT)
From: "Roland Hansen"
Subject: UT Phoenix Alumni events
To: xxxxxxxxxxxx@us.henkel.com
CC: utalumniemail@utoledo.edu

Hi Lorraine,
I am in receipt of your invitation to attend the UT Alumni Phoenix Chapter events being held November 13 (UT vs Ball State) and November 23 (UT vs BGSU) at the Teakwoods in Scottsdale.
I most certainly appreciate your invitation, but unfortunately I will be unable to attend either of these two events.
However, please keep me informed of future events.
Thank you very much.
Sincerely,
Roland Hansen

p.s. Incidentally, the invitation mistakenly referred to November 23 as Thursday.

p.p.s. Give my regards to your husband (my brother, Garry) and the rest of the family.

-------------------------

From: "UT Alumni"
To: rolhansen@yahoo.com
Subject: Phoenix Chapter Watch Parties on Nov. 13 & 23, 2007!
Date: Tue, 6 Nov 2007 20:00:12 -0500

Roland,

Join your Phoenix Chapter for two watch parties at Teakwoods to cheer on your University of Toledo Rockets as they battle the Ball State Cardinal on Nov. 13.

Gather with your chapter again on Nov. 23 to cheer your Rockets on as they battle arch-rivals, the BGSU Falcons.

Come out and show your Rocket pride and don't forget to wear your Midnight blue and gold!

Join your fellow Phoenix chapter at Teakwoods located at 8880 East Via Linda #108 in Scottsdale, AZ 85258 (PH 460.614.5452)for two nights of Rocket fun!

UT vs. Ball State on Tuesday, Nov. 13 at 5:30 p.m. and UT vs. BGSU on Friday, Nov. 23 at 12:30!

For more information contact chapter leader Lorraine Hansen at xxxxxxxxxxxx@us.heckel.com

-------------------------

From: Roland Hansen [mailto:rolhansen@yahoo.com]
Sent: Tuesday, November 06, 2007 10:43 PM
To: UT Alumni Email
Cc: xxxxxxxxxxxx; UT President
Subject: Re: Phoenix Chapter Watch Parties on Nov. 13 & 23, 2007!

Dear whomever sent this originating e-mail to me:
Upon receiving an invitation to these events via U.S.P.S. over a week ago, I sent both you (i.e. utalumniemail) and Lorraine an e-mail on October 29 that I would not be able to attend these events.
Did you not get that e-mail? Or do you not pay attention to the e-mail that is sent to you? Or is this just an all automated system? Or what?
Please respond in order that I may understand what is happening. If it turns out that this is all automated with no person with whom one may communicate, I shall just block e-mail from you and report it as spam.
Sincerely,
Roland Hansen

-------------------------

Date: Thu, 15 Nov 2007 08:38:56 -0500
From: "UT Alumni Email"
To: "Roland Hansen"

Ronald Hansen,
I do apologize for the incorrect email address. Lorraine recently changed e-mail addresses thus the mistake. I did not receive your e-mail as this is a bulk mailbox that you responded to used for bounce backs.
I do apologize.
Ansley Abrams
Director of Alumni Programming
The University of Toledo

-------------------------

Date: Thu, 15 Nov 2007 13:21:51 -0800 (PST)
From: "Roland Hansen"
Subject: RE: Phoenix Chapter Watch Parties on Nov. 13 & 23, 2007!
To: "UT Alumni Email" , ansley.abrams@utoledo.edu
CC: xxxxxxxxxxxx@us.henkel.com, utpresident@utoledo.edu, diane.hymore@utoledo.edu, penny.poplin.gosetti@utoledo.edu, lawrence.burns2@utoledo.edu

To Ansley Abrams:
Thank you for your response. However, another error
has now been made.
My name is Roland as I have written; it is not Ronald
as you have replied.
In regards to Lorraine's e-mail address, the error was
not in her address change but in the domain name; you
stated it was us.heckel.com rather than us.henkel.com.
With these types of ongoing errors, I have lost all
confidence in the competency UT Alumni office.
Roland Hansen


As you can see, the specific staff person finally provided her name, but not her e-mail address. I found that on my own by searching the University of Toledo website. Oh, and by the way, look at this particular web page from the involved staff person.
Did you notice, that her previous experience was with CitiFest.
CitiFest experience, hmmmmm. I guess that should not surprise me.
(January 22, 2009 UPDATE: The original web page that was in the preceding link is no longer in existence. Gee, I cannot help but wonder why University of Toledo had it removed? At any rate it was a biographical sketch about Ansley Abrams, now Ansley Abrams-Frederick, that mentioned her previous position with CitiFest.)
Remember this about CitiFest?

4 comments:

Hooda Thunkit said...

Roland,

I would suggest that you find a different committed, competent group to ally with.

These folks seem to be into self-destruct mode. . .

:-|

Roland Hansen said...

I don’t believe it!!! I’ve received yet another invitation for the same event to which I have already responded more than once. How many times must I tell them I cannot attend this event???

Look at this latest:

From: "UT Alumni" (utalumniemail @utoledo. edu)
To: rolhansen @ yahoo. com
Subject: Phoenix Chapter Watch Parties on Nov. 23, 2007!
Date: Wed, 21 Nov 2007 18:00:23 -0500

Roland,

Join your Phoenix Chapter for a watch party at Teakwoods to cheer on your University of Toledo Rockets as they battle arch-rivals, the BGSU Falcons.

Come out and show your Rocket pride and don't forget to wear your Midnight blue and gold!

Join your fellow Phoenix chapter at Teakwoods located at 8880 East Via Linda #108 in Scottsdale, AZ 85258 (PH 460.614.5452)for a great night of Rocket fun!

UT vs. BGSU on Friday, Nov. 23 at 12:30!

For more information contact chapter leader Lorraine Hansen at xxxxxxxxxxxx @ xxxxx. com

GO ROCKETS!


How incompetent can the University of Toledo Alumni Association be?!! Why do they keep sending me this notification???!!!!!

Now, I also have to question the competency of the administration of The University of Toledo in that I have contacted the University of Toledo President and several others on his adminstrative staff at least twice about this matter with no results of any kind. I have received no response from any one of the University of Toledo administration.


And just now, as I was about to post the above. I received this from the University of Toledo Alumni Office:

From:
"UT Alumni" (utalumniemail @ utoledo. edu)
To:
rolhansen @ yahoo. com
Subject:
UT Alumni Association Pre-game Tailgate Tent on Nov. 23!
Date:
Wed, 21 Nov 2007 19:01:07 -0500

Roland,

Your UT Rockets take on The BGSU Falcons in Bowling Green, OH.

Join your fellow UT Alumni and friends for the BIG GAME on Nov. 23, 2007 as your UT Rockets battle arch-rivals the BGSU Falcons!

Gather with your UT Alumni Association for a Pre-game Tailgate Tent and get rowdy before the final game of the 2007 football season.

When: Nov. 23, 2007
Time: 12:30 until 2:30 p.m.
Where: Meijer Tailgate Park, east of Doyt Perry Stadium
Cost: Free - Includes hot dogs, chips & sodas

For more information contact the office of Alumni Relations at 419.530.2586.

GO ROCKETS!

kayb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Roland Hansen said...

A comment to this blog entry thread had been posted by kayb, but then removed.
But, you need not worry. The comment was delivered to my e-mail. I have copied the comment that had been sent there; and, I have placed it below.



Date: Mon, 3 Dec 2007 21:08:05 -0800 (PST)
From: "kayb"
To: roland hansen
Subject: [Roland Hansen Commentary] New comment on University of Toledo Alumni Association: A Force o....

kayb has left a new comment on your post "University of Toledo Alumni Association: A Force o...":

Roland.
Hopefully I gain some initial points by spelling your name correctly.

I find it unfortunate that a man that seems to be as well educated and mature as you would have little better to do that spend his time belittling those who work hard to make an organization to serve people like yourself. If you are disastisfied with the organization, I would suggest calling and requesting not to receive emails or mailings from them, and discontinue your alumni membership if you have one.
If you continue to pursue your active interest in the organization, I would suggest that you come to the understnnding that human beings are capable of error and try to be as forgiving as possible.
If neither one of these options suits you, I hope that your search for the faults in others does not leave you wanting some day, for you might be foreced to recognize that you yourself have imperfections.
Best wishes.



Posted by kayb to Roland Hansen Commentary at December 4, 2007 12:08 AM