Author Topic: My University, The Gimmie Pig  (Read 4604 times)

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camlan

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #15 on: March 18, 2012, 08:46:24 PM »

I never heard of a college/university asking enrolled students for donations. They're making donations already -- it's called tuition.

Thirty-odd years ago, I attended a luncheon for graduating seniors at my college. The entire thing was a plea to donate money to the college. Classes were technically over, but graduation was still three days away. My friends and I were stunned that we'd be asked for money before we'd had a chance to get jobs.

And that luncheon has affected how we view donating to the college ever since. People still talk about it at reunions.
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CrazyDaffodilLady

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #16 on: March 18, 2012, 11:08:10 PM »
The first of two universities I attended has tracked me through 20 years and six cities.  They have both my work and personal email addresses, and I have no idea how they got them.  I don't consider that university my alma mater and have never given a penny.  It kind of creeps me out. 
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Harriet Jones

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #17 on: March 18, 2012, 11:31:20 PM »
As a requirement for graduation, the students at my husband's alma mater have to do a certain number of hours of phone solicitations.  :(

Are they required to actually make money for the university? That'd be an interesting contract, and possibly unenforceable. Me, I'd make as many calls as they forced me to, and I'd start out each one with, "This is Pete from your alma mater. Remember how they made you call for donations before you could graduate? Now it's my turn. Do you want to donate or would you prefer I hang up and let you go about your life?"

I don't think there's a money quota, just a set number of hours spent on the phone.

Lady Snowdon

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2012, 10:02:43 AM »
The first of two universities I attended has tracked me through 20 years and six cities.  They have both my work and personal email addresses, and I have no idea how they got them.  I don't consider that university my alma mater and have never given a penny.  It kind of creeps me out.

My mom's alma mater has latched onto me for some reason, and continually sends me solicitations addressed to her.  No number, no address, nothing to try and reach them to tell them they have an incorrect address and to stop sending me stuff!  The major irony is that my mom lives in the same town as that university, and they still send mail to me 4 states away!

Dindrane

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #19 on: March 19, 2012, 10:34:11 AM »
It's pretty common for university websites to have "donate" links/buttons relatively front and center.

And honestly, the reason why universities are so focused on fundraising is because pretty much all of them have seen their support from other sources dwindle, at least in the US.  State schools get less state funding, all schools get less federal funding, and the cost of higher education in general is going up.  Most schools are faced with the reality that they can either raise tuition to astronomical levels or seek private funding.  Many schools do raise tuition, but a lot of them would be raising it even more without donations from alumni and others.

So while I can certainly understand that some fundraising efforts feel ridiculous, I do understand the need for it.  I can't afford to give money to my own alma mater right now, but I don't blame them for soliciting it.  A lot of alumni who have the capacity to give only after some time has passed won't give anything if they feel like the school has been ignoring them.

Plus, I would imagine that the poor economy has a lot of schools redoubling their fundraising efforts.  People have less money to give overall, but the need for it is only increasing.  I imagine they have to work harder just to maintain the level of support they have achieved in the past, at a time when more and more students have a real need for financial assistance.  I know that where I live, state funding has been dwindling for a long time, but the poor economy and the state of the budget has led to pretty drastic cuts.  The larger universities here are far more capable of absorbing those cuts, because they rely less on state money.  But some of the smaller state universities are in real trouble, and have had to make some very unpleasant choices as a result.


Judah

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #20 on: March 19, 2012, 02:07:09 PM »

I never heard of a college/university asking enrolled students for donations. They're making donations already -- it's called tuition.

DS hadn't moved into the dorms yet his freshman year and I was getting calls for donations, but they were very good about taking me off their calling list.
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PeterM

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #21 on: March 19, 2012, 04:03:13 PM »
Are they required to actually make money for the university? That'd be an interesting contract, and possibly unenforceable. Me, I'd make as many calls as they forced me to, and I'd start out each one with, "This is Pete from your alma mater. Remember how they made you call for donations before you could graduate? Now it's my turn. Do you want to donate or would you prefer I hang up and let you go about your life?"

I don't think there's a money quota, just a set number of hours spent on the phone.

Well, heck. In that case I'd research - on my own time, of course - and find the contact information for an alumni who lived in a country with the highest possible charges for long distance phone calls, and spend my entire shift talking to them.

Autumn45

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #22 on: March 20, 2012, 08:18:24 PM »
Once my brother's university called my mom while he was still attending, and from the tone of the conversion it sounded like they were calling to inform her that my bro had been found dead in the library (Does your son attend the university? Does he use the library?) My mom was bracing herself for the news before they starting talking about how a donation would help him better use the library. 

Isometric

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #23 on: March 20, 2012, 08:54:38 PM »
I'm guessing they are trying to grab alumni, not students, with that donate button. A student probably knows his way around the site and won't spend much time on the home page. An alum probably doesn't visit his university's website that often, especially if he's from a time before that newfangled Internet thingy. He may hang out on the home page trying to figure out what's what before he clicks any links. And there's that donate button staring him in the face the whole time.


Good point.

Coley

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #24 on: March 23, 2012, 01:29:08 PM »
I was curious, so I just checked the home page for the college where I'm an adjunct instructor. It's a small, nonprofit liberal arts college. Info for students is front and center. I don't see anything related to giving until I click the tab for alumni and friends. Now I'm wondering if they might see more donations if they placed a donate button more prominently!  ;)

At this particular institution, it's not just alumni and parents who are solicited for donations. The faculty and staff are routinely solicited as well. And in the division in which I teach, our contributions are monitored. As in, the administration expects a certain percentage of the faculty, including adjuncts, to contribute. The higher-level administration sits hard on the lower-level administration when faculty giving is not what they think it should be.

Adelaide

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #25 on: March 26, 2012, 12:29:42 AM »
I just made a donation to the "University Alumni Gold Loyalty Fund". I did so because I got a full scholarship and figured hey, I could give back a little even though I'm not out of college and don't have a job yet. So I gave the amount requested by the UAGLF, and since then I've received two letters from them requesting more money. They specifically said "We thank you for your generous gift and will be relying on the generosity of alumni like you annually". Yes, "annually" was in italics. I didn't know one donation would open up a can of worms like this. :P

MommyPenguin

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #26 on: March 26, 2012, 03:25:57 PM »
My state university tuition went up almost 20% *every year we were there*.  What did they use the money for?  Well, they built a *huge* alumni center, new stadium, and tons and tons of new unnecessary (to the students who actually go to school there) stuff, mostly aimed at alumni and public events, plus the university's general appearance of grandeur.  They will never, ever get a donated cent of mine.  I even moved out of the state so they won't get any tax dollars anymore.  :)

Shea

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #27 on: March 27, 2012, 09:09:14 AM »

I never heard of a college/university asking enrolled students for donations. They're making donations already -- it's called tuition.

DS hadn't moved into the dorms yet his freshman year and I was getting calls for donations, but they were very good about taking me off their calling list.

When I was doing my undergrad studies, my university regularly called my parents (who were already paying a substantial portion of my tuition) asking them for donations :o.


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Oh Joy

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #28 on: March 27, 2012, 03:30:36 PM »
I was reading a social media and business type book earlier this month, and again today.  They mention the specific example of universities having five distinct customers to keep in mind:
1) Older alumni
2) Younger alumni
3) High school students considering college
4) Current students, and
5) Parents.

I'm personally not a fan of how hard some of my colleges work to get money out of me (you're a business, I paid for a service, and I'm a satisfied customer that doesn't want further interaction), but I don't expect their webpage to serve primarily as a student portal.


Just so I'm not plagiarizing, here's the link to the book:
http://www.amazon.com/The-New-Rules-Marketing-Applications/dp/1118026985/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1332876324&sr=1-5

Sophia

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Re: My University, The Gimmie Pig
« Reply #29 on: March 27, 2012, 03:52:43 PM »
My state university tuition went up almost 20% *every year we were there*.  What did they use the money for?  Well, they built a *huge* alumni center, new stadium, and tons and tons of new unnecessary (to the students who actually go to school there) stuff, mostly aimed at alumni and public events, plus the university's general appearance of grandeur.  They will never, ever get a donated cent of mine.  I even moved out of the state so they won't get any tax dollars anymore.  :)

Yeah, Totally! 
I went to a state University commuter college.  The tuition is many times what it was.  I went back a few years ago for a Masters.  What was the major difference?  The landscaping was amazing!  I am told the sports stadiums are world-class.  Remember the part about being a commuter college?  I could never find anyone who had even attended a game, ever.  On a warm day the landscaping was nice, but not worth even $1 more in tuition.