Odyssey of the Mind is a lifelong journey. Teams are encouraged to compete through the university level (Division IV), but once Omers complete Division III they are eligible to volunteer as a judge or other official at their local tournaments and at the international level. Alumni around the world volunteer as coaches, judges, tournament organizers, sponsors, and in many other roles in the spirit of "paying it forward," to help bring the benefits Odyssey of the Mind provides to students everywhere. The official OdysseyAlumni organization connects alumni to local associations and to the international community of alumni to help individuals remain involved in the program however they prefer, from simply attending competitions to supporting today's Omers to teaching Spontaneous workshops or even coaching brand new teams! You can join the OdysseyAlumni group by clicking the link in the resources section on the right.
PEOPLE INTERESTED IN STAYING INVOLVED IN ODYSSEY OF THE MIND...
HOW DO I BECOME A VOLUNTEER/JUDGE?
Becoming a volunteer or judge for Odyssey of the Mind is easy, and former Omers are particularly encouraged to continue their Odyssey as judges and officials because they have actually experienced the ins and outs of the program! Odyssey volunteers must be at least 18 years of age. You can reach out to your local Association Director, contact the international Odyssey of the Mind Headquarters, and/or join OdysseyAlumni and indicate that you are interested in receiving information about volunteering as an official at tournaments near you. If you are selected to volunteer as a judge, you will be required to complete a judge training the date and location for which is determined by your local tournament director. Volunteering at World Finals is an invitation-only process, but you can express an interest in volunteering through your local Association Director and/or the Odyssey of the Mind Headquarters (prior experience volunteering at local tournaments is often a prerequisite to volunteer at World Finals).
Odyssey alums find creative ways to stay involved in the Odyssey of the Mind program. Some alums have started new Odyssey of the Mind programs in schools and communities lacking a program. Other alums donate financial resources to local teams, tournaments, and groups advancing to World Finals. Many alumni volunteer their time as judges and officials at regional, state, and international competitions, such as World Finals and Eurofest. Others provide Spontaneous workshops or other skill workshops to current Omers. OdysseyAlumni also provides alums access to fellow alumni around the world, which has led to homestay programs, new friends to take you around some global city, and even friendly faces at a new university or a new city upon moving. There are countless ways to stay involved in Odyssey of the Mind!
HOW DO I STAY INVOLVED?
Odyssey of the Mind has been around since 1978. Now, Odyssey alumni are running international corporations, coaching NFL teams, starring in Hollywood blockbusters, writing bestselling novels, saving the environment, raising families, inventing new products, performing lifesaving surgeries, negotiating peace and trade treaties, and so much more! OdysseyAlumni features testimonials of alumni on its page, and everyone's success stories can be shared! Whether you are making a global or local impact, solving the world's problems or tackling life one day at a time, every Omer has a story to tell, so be sure to share your Odyssey success story today!
HOW CAN I SHARE MY ODYSSEY SUCCESS STORY?
Some OdysseyAlumni are unable to volunteer due to time constraints but contribute to the program via financial donations that help local tournaments, current Omers, and schools embark on their respective odysseys. Donations can be made to the OdysseyAlumni group, which together with Creative Opportunities Unlimited, invests all donations back to travel grants, scholarship, and other financial resources for current Omers. As 501(c)(3) organizations, any donations to OdysseyAlumni and/or Creative Opportunities Unlimited are tax deductible.
HOW CAN I MAKE A FINANCIAL CONTRIBUTION TO THE PROGRAM?
Odyssey alumni often have cousins, nieces/nephews, the children of friends, or other students in their community who would certainly benefit from participating in the Odyssey of the Mind school program. If you know of a student, family, school, or community organization that might be interested in starting an Odyssey of the Mind program, simply contact us using the form below with information on how to contact the group. We will do our best to help you bring this wonderful program to as many deserving students and schools as possible.
HOW CAN I NOMINATE "NEW" OR "PROSPECTIVE" OMERS?
AWARD OPPORTUNITIES FOR ODYSSEY OF THE MIND ALUMNI
This award recognizes current high school sophomores and juniors who are competing or who have competed and are involved in giving back to Odyssey of the Mind in extraordinary ways. Activities such as volunteering at tournaments, helping coach younger teams, and organizing Odyssey of the Mind at their local school or community would qualify an applicant.
Recipients will receive a $250 gift card and have an Odyssey of the Mind membership donated in their name to a program in need. The application deadline is February 15th, and recipients will be notified March 20th.
EMERGING ALUMNI AWARD - NEW!
This award recognizes alumni who have competed, are between the ages of 18-25, and who are involved in giving back to Odyssey of the Mind in extraordinary ways. Activities such as judging, organizing tournaments, coaching teams, or coordinating activities with regional or state associations would qualify an applicant.
The recipient will represent and assist Creative Opportunities Unlimited and OdysseyAlumni at World Finals at the Creativity Festival, Opening and Closing Ceremonies, Graduation Ceremony, and other activities. The award will cover room and board at World Finals in the same accommodations as Odyssey of the Mind officials as well as a $250 travel stipend.
Due to the requirements of this ambassador role, the recipient will not be able to compete or judge at World Finals. If there are questions about the expectations, please contact OdysseyAlumni.
The application deadline is February 15th, and recipients will be notified March 20th.
Note: due to the uncertainty of an in-person World Finals in 2021, the application timeline may be adjusted. Applicants will receive communication from OdysseyAlumni of any changes to the process or award.