August is here and many students are heading back to campus. Fall is a busy time for university fundraising. Sororities and fraternities need to raise dollars to fund various events and activities they host throughout the year, or to purchase necessities for their house. University sports teams may need to raise funds for equipment or upcoming tournament fees. The University itself may recruit faculty and students to engage in fundraising initiatives for developmental projects on campus or new resources and materials for students.
Regardless of the university fundraiser you choose, there are some important factors to consider prior to planning your fundraiser:
- Identify your audience: Who are you targeting? Students? Parents? Alumni? the local community?
- If you are targeting students, they are likely on a tight budget. Perhaps something like a discount card fundraiser may work well as students save money from various campus establishments by purchasing your card.
- If you are targeting active alumni, they are likely invested in the school. Think of university-related items such as selling hats or stadium cushions with an imprinted logo.
- If you are targeting a diverse group, think of something that brings everyone together – perhaps a fundraising walk-a-thon. A community fundraising event is a great way to raise money while providing an opportunity for social activity.
- Budget & Resources: Before you get too far in your planning, be sure to determine what kind of budget and resources you have for your fundraiser. Do you have plenty of volunteers to help with the planning? Do you have funds to cover up-front costs?
- Time is of the Essence: College students are busy juggling a number of priorities: classes, studying, sports, social engagements, etc. If you can create a fundraising campaign that allows students to participating without consuming too much of their time, it may be more appealing.
- Managing Your Fundraiser: Once you decide on what kind of fundraiser to host, you’ll need to determine how you’ll manage all the logistics. Online fundraising software can help you manage the various details of your fundraiser. By creating a fundraising website you can inform the campus community about the upcoming fundraiser, while providing an easy-to-use tool for online registration and secure donation processing.
Read on for more ideas for fun college fundraising themes, as well as free fundraising resources including “how-to” tips and free down-loadable templates!