Definition of alumnus in English:


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nounplural noun alumni/-nī/ /-nē/

  • 1A graduate or former student of a particular school, college, or university.

    ‘a Harvard alumnus’
    • ‘a mixture of news about the University and articles by alumni’
    1. 1.1A former member of a group, company, or organization.
      • ‘a Royal Ballet alumnus’





When used in the singular, alumnus (which is a male form in Latin) sometimes refers specifically to a male former student, with alumna being the corresponding female term, but the plural alumni generally refers to both sexes (the plural form alumnae may be used when referring to two or more female former students). In the US, the shortened form alum is increasingly used in informal contexts to avoid gender-specific terminology altogether


Early 17th century Latin, ‘foster-son, ward, pupil’, from alere ‘nourish’.