Establishing a University Engagement Council to Coordinate Communication with Major Donors



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Thoughtfully improve campus-wide communication efforts with major donors



Maximizing philanthropic opportunities is the underlying objective of every advancement shop. A fundamental part of ensuring this objective is achieved comes from broad engagement with major donors—which involves strategic communications and connections from various units and stakeholders on campus.

To ensure that communication efforts with major donors are well organized, having information on who is engaging these donors (and why, and when) is crucial to securing a major gift. By establishing an institutional engagement council that is spearheaded by advancement, your shop will manage and grow deeper relationships with major donors more effectively by calculating the right moments for connecting with them.

Join us for this important online training to learn how you can make the case to establish and execute a successful university engagement council for your campus.


Who Should Attend

This program will benefit major gift officers and advancement leaders who want to establish better institutional alignment among stakeholders who are communicating with major gift donors.

The Academic Impressions Online Learning Experience

Intentionally Designed
Online Learning

Our virtual trainings go far beyond just replicating PowerPoint presentations online: these experiences are intentionally designed to give you the kind of robust and dynamic learning experience you’ve come to expect from Academic Impressions. These trainings provide you with an active learning environment and an online space where you can explore ideas, get inspired by what your peers are doing, and understand the range of possibilities around a certain topic. You will leave these sessions with practical solutions that you can take back to your team or task force.

What you will get:

  • A dynamic, interactive, and high-touch virtual learning experience designed to engage and set you up for growth
  • Seamless online face-time, networking, group work, and Q&A opportunities from the comfort of your own workspace
  • Practical takeaways and hands-on knowledge
  • Guidance from vetted subject matter experts
  • Unlimited access to all recorded online sessions


June 30, 2022

1:00 - 2:30 p.m. Eastern

Making the Case
An internal assessment of whether a university engagement council is the right fit for your institution is the first step to establishing the council. Knowing what you want (and what you can get out of establishing one) will bolster the case you need to make to campus stakeholders in order to move forward.



Establishing the Council
Knowing the benefits and challenges of establishing an engagement council is key for ironing out the mission and possible objections. Learn how to formalize the structure of the program by understanding what goals to pursue and how to pursue them. You will have the opportunity to share the potential challenges you anticipate and receive advice on how to navigate them.



Executing the Mission
Your inaugural meeting will set the tone for success moving forward. Learn what your first agenda may look like and the information you would need to keep track of during discussion. You will want every unit present to participate. More specifically, you will learn the role of advancement in leading the conversation to engage your major donors through a more strategically intentional effort.


portrait of Chris Groff

Christopher S. Groff

Assistant Vice President, Corporate and Foundation Relations, Office of University Advancement, Fairleigh Dickinson University

Chris manages the CFR philanthropic planning, research, and stewardship process for all of Farleigh Dickinson’s campuses. His work and leadership has successfully led to an increase in the number of strategic corporate partnerships and grants dollars at FDU since 2004. Chris previously was as a director of corporate and foundation relations at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey and has a background in public policy, public relations and marketing. A frequent regional and national speaker, Chris is also a lecturer in communications.

Read Speaker's Full Bio.


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