Embattled U.S. government contractor Blackwater has started an alumni association. [Note: If you allow pop-ups in your browser, this link may launch an automatic download of a PDF file from the Blackwater website. This file is their alumni newsletter.]
The alumni web pages read like those of many corporate alumni groups:
The Blackwater Alumni Association is attempting to reach those who have trained here, those employed here and those who were once employed here and left in good standing....
As the Blackwater Alumni Association grows, you will find programs and opportunities to be involved [sic] including projects of good will and the chance to participate in alumni-exclusive events.
OK. Another employer using good alumni relations practice (and, unfortunately, poor proof-reading) to pursue many of the benefits mentioned in my June posting about corporate alumni relations.
But the next sentence caught me a little off guard - so to speak:
In the near future, an annual Blackwater Alumni Association shooting tournament will be announced, limited to association members.
Given recent media coverage of Blackwater's activities overseas, this struck me as ill-conceived - at best - from a public relations standpoint.
I guess shooting is something many of their contract employees need to know how to do, given their work assignments. But there are an awful lot of other competitions the company could sponsor. It almost makes you long for a golf tournament.
Meanwhile, Blackwater should probably include something about alumni in future issues of its alumni newsletter. [PDF download]