VCU implements campaign reinvestment fee
Virginia Commonwealth University is facing one of the toughest economic scenarios in its history as state support continues to rapidly decline and the cost of providing Virginia students a quality education continues to rise. In 2012, VCU will have lost about one-third of the state support for instruction it had in 2008, a decrease of more than $65 million.
Increasingly, the university must rely on engaged alumni and friends to play a pivotal role in the growth and development of VCU as a major research institution.
Joining universities statewide and nationally, VCU will implement Oct. 1 a 4 percent campaign reinvestment fee on all new gifts to further fund its development and alumni relations efforts. Half of the fee will support the school or unit to which the original gift was made while the remaining 2 percent will bolster universitywide efforts.
At the university level, the fee will allow for advances in centralized services that support schools’ and units’ development efforts, such as processing gifts, stewarding donors and engaging alumni, and to prepare for and execute future fundraising campaigns.
Some schools and units, including the Massey Cancer Center, might opt to not assess their portion of the fee.
VCU President Michael Rao, Ph.D., and other senior leaders are committed to developing and strengthening relationships with external audiences, such as the General Assembly, alumni and corporate partners, to raise additional support for key education and research initiatives.
“We understand that when donors make a gift they aim to support a cause or project that is meaningful to them, and our first objective is to honor that intent,” said Peter L. Wyeth, vice president for development and alumni relations. “Today’s donors recognize that even fundraising carries a cost of doing business. We appreciate that, and we will keep that cost as low as possible while we seek to expand and improve the university’s ability to attract and steward gifts to support its priorities.
“Remember, 100 percent of every dollar given directly supports Virginia Commonwealth University. Donors are not only helping a specific school or unit but also the university as a whole.”
Rao has appointed a 26-member Development Advisory Council that is charged with implementation and oversight of the new fee. The council is chaired by School of Nursing Dean Nancy Langston and includes other senior university leaders, members of the Board of Visitors, alumni and donors.