Alumni/Host Information

Dinner with Eight Bears are alumni-hosted dinners held throughout the year. These gatherings are meant to be networking opportunities for alumni and students who enjoy sharing their stories, experiences, and future plans.

What to expect

The time, location, topic of conversation and meal are chosen by the alumnus/a host. As the host, you'll decide the details, including your preferred group size, school audience preference, co-hosts and of course the menu. Hosts cover the cost of the meal; however hosts may receive in-kind donation credit (receipts required) for the cost of providing the meal.

Making the most of your Dinner with Eight Bears

  • Consider your theme. What topics of conversation are you interested in? (Networking, particular career fields, student involvement, study abroad experiences, etc.) Are there specific types of students you want to talk with? (First-generation college students, non-traditional students, fraternity-sorority life, etc.) We’ll include any special interests in your dinner’s profile to help attract students who have common interests. 
  • Decide on the number of students you want to host. Eight is just a suggestion—you decide what is comfortable for you. You may consider allowing a few extra spots at the table as students sometimes have to cancel. 
  • Consider a co-host. To help ensure you have a good student-to-host ratio, we ask that you have at least one co-host, and that at least one of you be a Missouri State graduate. If you need help finding a co-host, we have alumni volunteers that would be happy to join you. 
  • Choose a location that is easy for students to find and allows for conversation. The physical location doesn’t matter as much as proximity to campus and the amount of noise. 
  • When deciding on a menu, consider vegetarian and vegan options. Students will be able to indicate any dietary restrictions when registering. Although you are welcome to prepare a gourmet meal, a simple, buffet-style dinner is equally appreciated by our students. 
  • Consider the productive outcome of your dinner: What valuable takeaways do you want students to leave with? Structure your conversation toward that purpose.
  • Start with an icebreaker
  • Take a picture of your group and share it on our Facebook and Twitter