|Bob Burdenski's Latest Annual Giving Departures|
It's August and the Chicago Cubs are in first place as I write this, which means it's a great time to be in the Windy City. It's been a summer for catching up with old annual giving friends and new annual giving ideas. And, I rendezvoused with my old advancement services pal John Taylor at our 3rd Advancement Academy in Washington, D.C.
I've also popped up (or down?) in the Southern Hemisphere, with an article in this month's Fundraising and Philanthropy magazine in Australia. The article offers some thoughts on schools can teach the habit of "giving annually" through their "annual giving" program. You can download a pdf copy of the article here.
I'm continuing to be impressed with the ways that FaceBook, MySpace and other Web resources are being adapted for annual giving use. If you're trying to figure it all out, a good place to start is the It's An Annual Giving World group on Facebook, which is linking annual giving professionals from around the globe. You can find it here: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=4101144266
We're pleased to be working with a number of new or returning clients and projects, including the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University, the Potomac School, the University of Dayton, Longwood University, Tufts University, George Washington University and the City University of Hong Kong.
Look for us on the program session agenda this Summer and Fall at two CASE Asia workshops (see below), and a second year of programs for the online Annual Giving Roundtable series. Included this month is a mix of new media and old, and don't miss the highlights from the latest FundList Direct Mail Exchange.
Car washes, bake sales and chili tickets remain effective ways for school groups to raise a little money, but schools looking to create more significant and consistent funding streams might want to cultivate a spirit of philanthropy in their alumni and current students.
"There should be a lot more private giving for the local high schools," said Kelvin Shoji, director of development for University of Hawai'i athletics.
Shoji notes that often when people are asked where they graduated from, they'll name their high school rather than their college. "There's a tremendous amount of affinity for your high school, so you're looking at your alumni," he said. Alumni associations can do more than just track former students down for reunions. They can encourage the alumni to give private gifts, fund scholarships or make annual pledges. Foundations across the nation focus on building affinity with people who have benefited from their programs and encourage them to help provide the same opportunities to others, Shoji said.
Private schools have advantages that public schools don't have, and some can start teaching students to give back from kindergarten and still encourage their graduates and their parents to keep sending checks long after the final tuition bill is paid. Jane Heimerdinger, director of institutional advancement at 'Iolani School and president of the Association of Fundraising Professionals in Hawaii, said a disadvantage for public schools may be that they don't tend to track their students beyond graduation. "We enjoy following our students ... through their college years, into their professional years, into their marriages and throughout their lifelong journeys," she said.
Bob's Annual Giving Roundtable series is back this fall, and it's twice as nice. Join Bob Burdenski for TWO new monthly series all about time-honored best practice and best new Innovations in Annual Giving.
Create your own custom ongoing annual giving training by participating in any or all of Bob's monthly annual giving roundtable programs. There's no limit to how many people can attend at your institution. (One Web link and dial-up connection only.) Click here to see Bob's regular Annual Giving Roundtable schedule for 2007-08.
Especially For New Annual Giving Professionals: On afternoons following the monthly Annual Giving Roundtable, Bob will also be conducting an ongoing Web series for new annual giving professionals. You can participate in either session that day, or enjoy a Bob double feature! Click here to see the Bob's Basics Annual Giving Web schedule.
New for 2007-08 - Ongoing Online Chat: Now you can ask questions of your fellow program attendees while the Roundtable presentation is going on. Leverage your time and the amount of knowledge you gain by asking questions of your peers as you go. When Bob starts rambling, your learning can keep going!
New for 2007-08 - Live Interviews with Annual Giving Innovators: A regular part of each Annual Giving Roundtable program will be a 15-minute interview with one of the leading annual giving program practitioners of the day. Get insights and answers straight from the experts on the front lines.
New for 2007-08 - Order Past Roundtable Programs On CD: Any previously-conducted Roundtable or Bob's Basics presentation can now be ordered as a Powerpoint or Flash show on CD. Listen to Bob ramble over and over again!
New for 2007-08 - Subscription Discounts: Participate in any four Annual Giving Roundtables and participate in a fifth for free.
A sandwich named in your honor, early access to the Online Alumni Community, and a Greatest Love of All giving society were just some of the strategies on display at the 9th annual FundList Direct Mail Exchange. Each summer since 1999, FundList has managed a direct mail samples exchange for those schools and organizations interested in seeing samples from their peers.
This year, a record 150 schools participated. For many, it's an important component of their program planning for the coming year, as they review the messages and materials created by their peers over the previous year.
We can't show you all of the samples -- that's reserved for the participants. But you CAN watch an online powerpoint slideshow of five sample favorites from 2007 here.
Incoming students at the University at Buffalo this summer are getting a lesson in UB pride and spirit -- as well as an introduction to the university's alumni association -- before they even step into a classroom.
Graham G. Stewart, UB's associate vice president for alumni relations, has resurrected a college tradition and is teaching the students and their parents to sing the UB alma mater and fight song as part of the 45-minute presentation that kicks off each of the eight, two-day orientation sessions being held for new students.
The project, which Stewart has undertaken at the invitation of Dennis R. Black, vice president for student affairs, and Barbara J. Ricotta, associate vice president and dean of students, marks the first time the UB alma mater has been introduced to students and parents as part of orientation. Moreover, it's the first time the head of the university's alumni relations office has had a role in welcoming new students to UB.
"I'm going to meet the entire freshman class this way," says Stewart. "It's a great opportunity for me to put a face to alumni relations and connect with a lot of generation -- to be able to walk around campus and see some of these students, and have them recognize me from participating in their orientation program.
"I wanted to bring a higher profile to the alumni association and the work that we do," he adds, pointing out that appearing at orientation generates more awareness about the alumni association and helps to open a direct line of communication with incoming students interested in student-alumni activities ranging from career development programming to Oozfest, UB's annual mud volleyball tournament that is open to students and alumni. "Maybe the last thing on their minds is becoming alumni," Stewart says, "but these young students are joining more than 200,000 people who have come through the university, and there's no reason to wait until graduation to take advantage of our programming."
Stewart is an accomplished singer and musician, as well as an experienced higher education administrator. His early career as a professional singer touring the Far East and performing in regional opera companies -- not to mention more recent stage time as the third-place champion in the 2004 International Whistling Competition and a trombonist in local performances -- serves him well when it comes to capturing the attention of a crowded auditorium. His powerful solo performance of the alma mater at a recent orientation session -- after which students and parents were invited to join in -- prompted spontaneous applause from the audience and an enthusiastic, second-round sing-along.
Macalester College has greened up its online giving page, and added an environmentally-conscious nuance to its annual giving case for support.
From the Macalester Annual Fund online giving site:
"The Annual Fund is pleased to launch, GIVE GREEN!, a giving option that helps reduce the unnecessary use of resources such as paper, postage, and fossil fuels used in transporting direct mail. When you decide to GIVE GREEN, most communications from the Annual Fund will be transmitted to you and other members of your household electronically."
The Ex-Students' Association of Kaur Senior Secondary School in Gambia embarked on a series of activities as part of their contribution to their alma mater. The activities include the cleaning of the school and its periphery, painting of classrooms and blackboards, fencing as well as giving the school campus a face-lift.
Speaking in an interview with this reporter, the Vice President of the alumni, Ms. Ramatoulie Jarjusey, explained that Kaur ex-pupils association was founded in 2000 at the Gambia College when the idea was conceived by Ahmed Jeng and Saikou Jeng. She explained that the overriding objective of the association is to see how best the ex-students could contribute both their might and main towards the realization of quality education delivery in the school.
Also speaking to this paper, Mr. Ismaila Jallow, a member of the association's advisory committee, revealed that Kaur Ex-Students' Association has a membership of over 200 people. He posited that since its founding some seven years ago, the association has been working in tandem with the school's administration and that it has assisted and continues to support students both morally and financially. The Principal of Kaur Senior Secondary School, Mr. Momodou Baba Jallow, commended the association for their interventions and urged others to follow suit. He added that the administration is always willing to work with the association and assured them of their fruitful and constructive collaboration.
Sixty-one small American colleges have mounted the biggest protest yet against U.S. News & World Report magazine's annual rankings of higher education. The survey's 25 premier schools aren't joining the rebellion.
The presidents of Holy Cross, Lafayette, Trinity and 58 other liberal arts schools have pledged in the past 10 weeks to withhold cooperation from Washington-based U.S. News on the most controversial element of its 24-year-old survey, a questionnaire asking colleges to assess competing schools.
Williams, Amherst, Swarthmore and 23 other schools at the top of the magazine's list have rebuffed requests to participate from organizers of the revolt. While officials of the best- regarded schools say they're concerned about the survey's fairness, some of them promote their rating to donors, faculty and students.
``This is a test of the character of higher education and the leadership,'' said Lloyd Thacker, 53, the executive director of the nonprofit Education Conservancy in Portland, Oregon, an opponent of rankings. ``I don't think we're done with this by any way, shape or form.''
U.S. News, with a circulation of 2 million, publishes its next college rankings in August. Schools that haven't decided whether to cooperate for 2009 don't have to make a choice until early next year, when questionnaires will be circulated again.
Swarthmore is ``actively reviewing'' its participation in the U.S. News peer-review survey, according to Nancy Nicely, a spokeswoman for the school. While Wellesley, a women's college, hasn't signed the letter, the institution didn't take part in the peer review during the 14-year presidency of Diana Chapman Walsh, which ended on July 1, spokeswoman Mary Ann Hill said.
Other schools, including Davidson College in North Carolina, may continue cooperating with U.S. News. Davidson is tied for 10th in liberal arts with Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.
``A college like Davidson is looking for national exposure,'' said spokesman Bill Giduz. Thomas Ross, the incoming president of Davidson, ``recognizes there are flaws in the system,'' Giduz said, ``but it's kind of the only game in town.''
It's Star Ferries and SYBUNTS in Hong Kong, as Bob brings his latest annual giving innovations to Asia. Bob's programs will feature old favorites from Innovations in Annual Giving, as well as new global examples from his book, More Innovations in Annual Giving.
A year ago, the CASE Board of Trustees made a historic decision to establish a full-time CASE presence in the Asia-Pacific region. CASE now has Krista Slade in place as executive director and a new office on the campus of the National University of Singapore.
To celebrate the launch of CASE's Asia-Pacific operations, CASE president John Lippencott will be traveling to Asia and Australia to participate in seminars and host welcome receptions.
Receptions for members and friends of CASE will be held in Singapore on Sept. 5, and Hong Kong on Sept. 7. Invitations will follow to members in the region, but if you live elsewhere and will able to join us, you are most welcome to attend. Why not hop on a slow boat and join Bob's September workshops!