Division Update to University Senate

February 5, 2020

The following update on University Advancement activities was recently submitted to the University Senate. The Senate requests these updates from each division once or twice per month, but Advancement has not previously participated. The updates will be submitted going forward, and will be shared within the division.

University Advancement
Submitted by Frank Whitlatch, VP for University Advancement

Recent projects and successes

• During the 2018-19 year, more than 5,000 donors committed $7 million in support of HSU students and programs. Find out more, and learn how to become a donor, on the HSU Foundation’s new website.

• The recent Investiture activities were a strong success, and served as a celebration of HSU. For the ceremony, the campus community was joined by 11 other CSU Presidents, the CSU Chancellor, and others from across the CSU system, as well as local community leaders. That evening, donors gave more than $160,000 for scholarships at the Investiture Dinner, which was held at the Ingomar Club. Many individuals from Advancement played key roles in organizing the events, and the HSU Foundation covered the costs of the activities and the dinner. Photos, the video that was shown at the event, and more are on the Investiture website.

• The HSU community came together to provide holiday gifts to 134 local children this year as part of the annual Winter Wishes campaign, coordinated by the Office of Alumni & Engagement. The children were identified with the help of seven local nonprofits. Gifts were donated by student clubs, athletic teams, faculty, staff, and alumni.

• Donors have met the challenge of a matching grant from HSU. Over the last six months, they gave more than $50,000 to the Student Adversity Fund, which provides mini-grants to help students overcome unexpected challenges so they can stay in school. Even though the challenge has been met, the need is great and donations are still being accepted.

• The HSU Foundation has increased the endowment investments in socially and environmentally responsible mutual funds to 26 percent. That is well beyond the initial goal of 10 percent established by the Foundation’s Board five years ago. The overall endowment is now worth more than $32 million.

• We hope you enjoy your 2020 HSU calendar, created by the team in Marketing & Communications and featuring photos by Kellie Brown. It was distributed to nearly 70,000 alumni, students, families, faculty, and staff. If you did not receive one, extra copies are available by contacting Marcom at 826-3321.

Organization and planning

• The division is working to further develop and refine plans for a campus-wide fundraising campaign, which is currently in the quiet phase. This will be HSU’s first comprehensive campaign. A feasibility study will be completed by an outside firm by this fall, and that study will provide greater clarity about donor interest and the possible scope of the campaign.

• The Office of Development is re-focusing its efforts on major gift cultivation, and has re-allocated resources from support areas to be able to hire new gift officers. A search is currently underway to fill up to two of these roles. According to the most recent CSU data, Humboldt is among the three campuses with the fewest professional fundraisers (along with Cal Maritime and Stanislaus).

• The HSU Foundation is supporting efforts to enhance community outreach. It is providing funding for the University to have representatives or sponsor tables at as many as 30 community events during 2019-20. The Foundation also allocated funding to support advocacy for this year’s school bond measure.

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