February 27, 2004
to boost alumni donations
new alumni-giving campaign will begin in March, and University
Advancement officials would eventually like TCU to have
the No. 1 alumni-giving rate in Texas.
The Horned Frogs plan to beat the Rice Owls in collecting
monetary gifts from alumni.
But the Frogs have a long way to go.
TCUs alumni-giving rate the percentage of
graduates who make donations was 30 percent in
fiscal year 2003, compared with Rice Universitys
average rate of 35 percent, the highest in Texas, according
to TCU advancement officials.
However, a new giving campaign to be launched in March,
called Give Every Year. Its What Horned Frogs
Do, is designed to stimulate giving and curb Rices
lead, said Bronson Davis, vice chancellor for University
The campaign, designed by University Advancement, will
include spotlighting donors in the TCU Magazine and in
the alumni e-newsletter, Davis said. Direct mail and e-mails
to current students and alumni will explain why the university
believes alumni participation is important. A movie to
be shown at orientation and Frog Camp will also be created,
but it wont be ready this summer, Advancement Officer
Cindy Hayes said.
The ultimate goal of the campaign is to surpass Rice in
alumni-giving and achieve the highest giving rate in Texas,
Davis said, but this will not happen overnight.
The campaign will start small by increasing alumni-giving
from 30 percent to 31 percent by May 31, the last day
of the fiscal year, Hayes said.
Hayes said this goal probably wont be met because
the university is currently at a 20.7 percent alumni-giving
rate, which is behind the February target of 23 percent.
To stay on track, the university needs 800 donors by the
end of the month.
According to data found in the 2004 Operational Report
written by University Advancement, the alumni-giving rate
had been growing at an average rate of 1 percent a year
since 1994, but stopped growing after 2001, when it fell
from 31 percent to 30 percent. The rate has stayed at
30 percent since 2002.
University Advancement officials want to improve the alumni-giving
rate for two main reasons: Increase the annual fund and
improve the universitys media ranking, Hayes said.
First, the money raised is donated to the annual fund,
which supports scholarships, research, equipment, faculty
salaries and the library.
Its important to give so future students will
receive the same support students receive today,
Hayes said. Giving adds value to your degree. You
dont want your school to go down the tube after
Second, U.S. News & World Report uses the alumni-giving
rate along with peer assessment, graduation and retention
rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial
resources and graduation rate performance to determine
overall college rankings.
According to the Sept. 1, 2003, Americas Best
Colleges issue, scores for each measure of academic
quality are weighted to determine the final overall score.
Alumni- giving has a 5 percent weight.
The issue ranked TCU in 99th place nationally, tied with
seven other universities.
According to the report, TCU had a 28 percent alumni-giving
rate, which doesnt match up with the 30 percent
rate listed in TCUs Operational Report.
Hayes said the Operational Report is correct and U.S.
News & World Report could have used old numbers.
TCU was ahead in alumni-giving when compared with the
other universities that tied for 99th place, with the
lowest giving rate of 6 percent belonging to Loyola University
Chicago and the second-highest rate of 23 percent belonging
to the University of Alabama.
Although those in the academic community view the media
rankings with skepticism, rankings have a significant
impact on prospective students when deciding where to
attend college, Hayes said.
If TCU becomes the No. 1 university for alumni-giving
in Texas, then its national ranking will improve, Davis
People will feel good when they lead the state in
alumni satisfaction rating, Davis said. Its
like a football game. Everyone wants to be associated
with the winning team.