Athens, GA–The University of Georgia will announce what it plans to do with a record amount of private donations next month.
Four years ago, the University began a capital campaign with the goal of raising a billion dollars in private donations by 2020. Each year since, donation numbers have increased by tens of millions of dollars–up to more than $183 million this year.
Jay Stroman from the Department of Development and Alumni Relations credits the turnaround in fundraising to a restructuring of the fundraising process.
Stroman says “There were different units that needed to be shifted around and we have hired over 40 people throughout or unit in Development and Alumni Relations. So, it’s just a different way of looking at fundraising–thinking in larger terms.”
Timothy Gregory fundraises over the phone for the University. He feels a change in the way fundraisers ask for money is responsible for the rising numbers.
Gregory says “A lot people are sometimes get thrown off by us asking for a lump sum of one hundred to two hundred-plus dollars at one time. Getting people to pay on a monthly basis helps them and increases our numbers too.”
More than 61-hundred scholarships were funded this year as a result of private donations. Student Chidera Onyirimba wants to see more of the money go towards what she says are underfunded student organizations.
Onyirimba says “A good amount of the money should at least be allocated or funded to organizations in order to help push these organizations and their programs forward. That wayv the students on campus are able to do more, because without money, to be honest, a lot of us can’t do what we need to do.”
The University will not release what the money will go toward specifically, but Stroman says need-based scholarships are a top priority. “Everybody thinks that because you have the HOPE Scholarship that it pays for everything, and it pays for a great amount, but there is always a gap”, says Stroman.
University officials will reveal where the money is going next month at the public phase announcement.
By: Nathaniel McDaniel @nate8929