Fundraising fails to meet potential
Published: Monday, May 28, 2012
Updated: Monday, May 28, 2012 14:05
A lack of campus community participation has led to the failure of a fundraising program to aid CSM budget deficits.
Only about $2,300 has been raised in two years.
Escrip is a program that was adopted by CSM in the Spring 2010 that is designed to raise funds for schools.
The program has people register their membership cards to outlets such as Food Max and when customers make a purchase with their cards; three percent of the total purchase goes to the organization of the customer’s choosing.
“It costs you nothing,” said Beverly Madden. “It’s things that you already do.”
Madden along with the CSM marketing and public relations department made videos, a webpage and promotional cards to advertise the program.
“It’s incredibly sad,” said Madden. ‘It’s raised just over $2,000, it’s nothing.”
The fundraising idea came to fruition when student Justin Hoffman brought the already established online program to the attention of CSM administration at an all campus meeting.
Most of the money raised has mostly come from CSM staff and faculty who have signed up for Escrip.
“It’s a function of quantity,” said Hoffman. The more people that use the program the more money is raised for CSM.
Hoffman, along with groups of likeminded people on campus, studied the idea of incorporating the online program to CSM fundraising in 2009 as response to the extreme budget cuts California was facing.
CSM president Michael Claire, in a reference letter for Hoffman, cited the potential of the program to raise nearly $100,000 a year for the school.
“If student leadership was able to streamline it and get the numbers, they could get money on a year to year basis.”
Madden presented the fundraising opportunity to ASCSM in hopes of wrangling more student support, but the endeavour was unsuccessful as quarterly earnings stayed the same.
“There was definitely more resources we could have tapped into and utilized to give exposure to Escrip,” said current student senator Jeff Stanley, 22.
Since the program’s start in the spring of 2010, CSM has raised about $2,300. The program is limited in that it only provides benefit to CSM if its supporters purchase products at three major outlets, Savemart, Food Max and Lucky. The closest outlet from that selection to San Mateo residents is Lucky in Millbrae.
“If there is one in the area it is only one and I don’t usually shop there. If there were more companies participating that were widespread and prevalent I wouldn’t mind shopping there,” said Stanley.
In the fall of 2010, Support CSM website incorporated Amazon.com to its fundraising mechanism. If an online customer registered their Amazon accounts through the Support CSM website a small percentage of the purchase would go to CSM, at no cost to the school or the customer.
“It hasn’t done what we’d hoped it would do,” said Madden. “We had hoped it could raise something like $30,000 to help with courses to offer students.”
The money raised from the Escrip program has not been used so far. In the fall semester, at the request of Madden, a portion of the money will be used to award CSM scholarships to incoming high school students to aid with tuition.