Alumni Email Address

Important Changes to Alumni and Retiree Accounts and Email

Information Technology previously maintained more than 30,000 OUNet Accounts and email addresses for alumni and retirees. These accounts made up more than one-third of all OUNet Accounts and represented significant cost, cybersecurity risk, and contract compliance challenges.

To address these issues and create a more sustainable email offering, IT decommissioned OUNet Accounts and email addresses for alumni and retirees and instead has offered each user an email account as a replacement. Future retirees and alumni will be able to create an email account, as well.

To ensure the smoothest transition possible:

  1. Create your Alumni email account
  2. Back up personal emails, contacts, calendar items, etc. from your existing email account that you would like to keep.
  3. Update your email address on any consumer services (Netflix, Apple, automatic bill payments, etc.) that use your email for account access or communication

We know that losing your address is difficult for many and that this transition will require a time commitment from you. We apologize for any frustration or inconvenience. If you would like to provide feedback, please fill out the IT Feedback survey here.


How do I set up my alumni email account?

Instructions for setting up your account can be found here.

How do I add my alumni email to an email client or mobile device?
Please visit these articles to find instructions on adding your alumni email account to an email client or mobile device.

Can I choose my alumni email address?
Alumni email addresses are automatically created based on your name on file with the University following this standard: In the case of a duplicate address, a number is added:


Will IT back up my personal mail and migrate it to my new account? 
Only personal emails, contacts, and calendar items should be backed up or migrated from your account. Unfortunately, IT cannot review your emails to identify personal communications to migrate.
If you have access to an Outlook desktop client, please visit this article.

How do I back-up my personal email if I do not use a mail client?
You can forward personal emails individually, but if you choose not to do that then you will need to download an email client in order to back up your email.

Can I forward OU emails to my alumni account?
If you would like to set up an email forward, please visit this article.


What if I am an alumnus/alumna and current OU employee or a returning student?
Current employees and/or alumni who return as students will retain their email in addition to their alumni account. If an employee or student leaves OU, they will lose access to their email address, but not their alumni email address.

Will I still be able to log into OU systems and digital services?
No. Your alumni email address cannot be used to access OU systems.

What if I need to conduct official OU business?
If you are still affiliated with a department at OU, please contact the department head.

Can I pay to keep my email address?
No. Your email address will be decommissioned on the expiration date given to you via email.

Will I lose access to any retiree benefits that require an OUNet Account?
No. You can access most retiree benefits with a retiree letter or a Sooner Card. Your OUNet Account is only used to access a few retiree services (HR Training, Employee Discount Program, and Library Services). We are working with those departments to ensure continued access to those services prior to expiration of alumni and retiree accounts.

Why did IT make this change?
As we seek to further reduce IT costs and risk, we have had to make some difficult choices about service offerings so that we can continue to support the University’s core missions effectively. The following provides insight into some of the issues that required us to make this change:

  • Cybersecurity – Alumni and retiree accounts were susceptible to phishing because they were not monitored as regularly as active student, faculty, and staff accounts. If an alumni or retiree account was hacked, it had unfettered ability to send emails to addresses for active students, faculty, and staff. Bad actors could then use this ability to target individuals with access to OU systems or data. Shifting these alumni and retiree accounts to a new domain provides a buffer of protection against these types of attacks.
  • Cost – The email service is provided by Microsoft as a free service to the University community, which reduces licensing costs and costs related to managing and securing those 30,000 accounts.
  • Resources – Those 30,000 accounts represented resource concerns for a number of different departments across campus, including IT and the Open Records Office.
  • Licensing Compliance – Software companies don’t typically license products for alumni or retirees. Because of the way users download some enterprise software, we can’t always limit access of alumni or retirees, which puts us out of compliance with our contracts. As we focus on renegotiating major contracts to further reduce costs, we need to make sure that we can limit access only to those who need it or risk price increases.

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Article ID: 488
Fri 9/18/20 1:10 PM
Tue 10/12/21 1:56 PM