The UNC Charlotte Fund, the University’s annual giving program, achieved a record-breaking year for donor pledges and calls.
According to Stacie Young, director of annual giving in the Division for University Advancement, student callers obtained 7,172 pledges totaling $500,342 for the current fiscal year; this was an increase from last year’s 5,293 pledges for $405,557. Also, overall calls increased from 35,000 to 45,975. The number and amount of pledges are both records for the annual giving program.
"This year’s success is gratifying to the entire advancement team, and it is a direct result of the leadership decision to bring the entire operation in-house," explained Young. This past fall, the division decided to manage the Call Center operation using its own students and staff after more than a decade with an external company that specializes in student phone-a-thon services. UNC Charlotte alumnus, Nick Herman, came on board as assistant director; he manages the majority of Call Center operations, working closely with Young and the student callers.
"With so many program changes, we expected new and different challenges. But everyone responded positively, especially our dedicated, enthusiastic students," Herman noted.
From an administrative standpoint, Young and advancement operations staff took over assembling and processing pledge reminders via regular mail and email. CampusCall, the program that stores donor contact information used by student callers, is now maintained and updated using advancement personnel.
Herman said the plans are to expand center operations beyond fundraising, such as calling new graduates to congratulate them on their accomplishment and welcome them into the alumni family.
"Generating greater, private financial support provides the University additional resources to enhance the quality education that we so proudly offer at UNC Charlotte," Young said.