n. pl. a·lum·ni (-nī′)
A male graduate or former student of a school, college, or university.
[Latin, pupil, from alere, to nourish; see al-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
Usage Note: Alumnus and alumna both come from Latin and preserve Latin plurals. Alumnus is a masculine noun whose plural is alumni, and alumna is a feminine noun whose plural is alumnae. Coeducational institutions usually use alumni for graduates of both sexes. But those who object to masculine forms in such cases may prefer using alumni and alumnae, alumnae/i, or the more casual alums. The word graduates also presents a gender-neutral alternative.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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