Sunday, February 14, 2010

Phone-A-Thon for Coker College termed Success

The Coker College Phone-A-Thon last week was a major success, recording one of the largest Phone-A-Thon totals. The success of the phone-a-thon is good news for Coker and we hope it is a bellwether for giving to Coker and to colleges.

The other day, right after the last blog about the Phone-A-Thon, my eye caught a headline on page 11 in the CHRONICLE OF PHILANTHROPY of the Feb. 11 edition: "Giving to Private College Dropped Last Year. Survey Finds." The Voluntary Support of Education survey, conducted by the Council for Aid to Education, found that donations fro July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009 dropped nearly 12%, "the steepest decline in the survey's 50-year history." This horrible year followed what was the highest total ever recorded in 2007/08 according to Kathryn Masterson, the article's author.

The increased giving in this year's Phone-A-Thon is good news for Coker. Coker is not unlike other colleges in depending on alumni contributions to help build areas like the annual scholarship funds. The Chronicle article noted that there has been a drop in alumni participation that is troubling for colleges, "because alumni are their largest source of contributions, making up a quarter of total giving." I have no idea what the proportions are for Coker but as a faculty member, it was good to hear of the increased giving from this year's Phone-A-Thon. As the students said when ending a positive call -- Thank you so much for your giving to Coker College.

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