International Fundraising Program
If you read my last blog, you will remember that at one point in my administrative career I was responsible not only for enrollment and retention but for fundraising and alumni affairs. At the time of my appointment most of my colleagues did not believe that one person could be successful for the “whole ball of wax.” I must admit that I too was skeptical. But the president assured me that I knew how to market the school. So in addition to marketing to parents and students I would now market to alumni and other donors.
My strategic fundraising plan included raising funds from international families and donors to meet my goal. At the end of the campaign, international families contributed 30 percent of the final total.
What made this possible was the administrative structure. Since I was responsible for recruitment, including international recruitment, I was aware, at the time of recruitment, of the families who were able to become donors in the future.
Let me be clear about acceptance. Not one student was accepted because of the fundraising capacity of the family. “Friend raising” began after acceptance and enrollment. But since the families knew me, in some cases, for one or two years, when it came time to ask for a donation, the parents were receptive because the relationship was already established.
I realize you will read this next sentence with skepticism. But it is true. No international parent who was asked to contribute to our campaign turned me down. Raising money from international families was the easiest part of completing the campaign.
I realize this administrative structure is unique. I don’t know of another college or university who is organized to have a vice president for enrollment also responsible for being a vice president for development. This would not work at 99% of schools. But there may be one college reading this blog who thinks it would work and give it a try. I think it’s worth exploring.