Great Experiences: Alumnae/i Attachment

For many years, Gallup has conducted research on consumer behavior across hundreds of organizations in many industries. Its research shows that fully engaged customers buy more, stay with you longer, and are more profitable than average customers — in good economic times and in bad.

The Gallup-Purdue Index measures graduates’ current emotional attachment to their alma mater by adapting Gallup’s research on customer engagement to assess graduates’ perceptions of their colleges — retrospectively concerning their undergraduate experiences, and currently as alumnae/i.

Because students spend a significant amount of resources preparing for life outside of college, it is crucial to gauge whether the experiences they had in college have promoted a well-lived life. This includes whether they perceive that the college was a great fit for them, that they had professors who cared and made them excited about learning, and, most importantly, that their school prepared them well for life outside of college.

Emotional Attachment

Goucher alumnae/i are attached to their alma mater at rates comparable to the national average.


Goucher graduates


National college graduates


Small, residential college graduates


Competitor graduates

The Impact of Emotional Attachment

Alumnae/i who were emotionally attached were much more likely to make a gift or volunteer.

Goucher alumnae/i who are emotionally attached to their
alma mater have donated financially

Goucher alumnae/i who are emotionally attached to their
alma mater have volunteered

The Role of the Magic Six



Goucher alumnae/i who had all six support and experiential learning experiences (the “magic six”) while attending college are more likely than all other Goucher alumnae/i to be emotionally attached to the college.