Monday, July 15

Fundraising 101: Steps to building a successful donor plan

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Lindsay Curtis

by Lindsay Curtis

In the world of higher education, fundraising is integral in advancing the mission and vision of your institution. As an academic leader, fundraising likely demands a portion of your time and attention, and for good reason. With reduced government funding, rising operating costs, and increased competition, your institution's fundraising efforts are more important than ever.

In the 2018 academic fiscal year, colleges and universities across the United States raised a record $46.73 billion, according to an annual survey by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).(1) Higher education institutions rely heavily on philanthropy, and most of us need an “all hands on deck” approach to fundraising campaigns. But where to begin?

According to the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, Alumni give more than any other philanthropic source except foundations.

According to the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, Alumni give more than any other philanthropic source except foundations.

Create a campaign

An integrative fundraising campaign that includes alumni relations and communications activities along with your fundraising efforts is a major driver for success. Your campaign is an opportunity to highlight a path forward and describe how philanthropy — and your donors — can help you carry out the mission and vision of your institution.

Alexander Graham Bell’s quote, “Before anything else, preparation is the key to success,” is fitting for the world of fundraising in our modern era. In order to successfully carry out your fundraising campaign, a considerable amount of preparation and planning is key.


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