The phone rings at 6pm on a Monday. It’s a call from the University of South Florida.
Answer or voice mail?
“Hi, I’m calling from the USF College of Public Health to share how much we appreciate your gift this year.”
Spending a couple of hours on the telephone may not appeal to most folks, but a group of USF Bulls recently seized the opportunity.
To thank more than 200 alumni, faculty, staff, and friends who gave a charitable donation to the USF College of Public Health in 2013.
For Lisa Conder, Brittney Devallon, Infiniti Mincey, Dana Giandomenico, and Emily Henderson the evening would prove to be an interesting one. It began with dinner and a debriefing on what to expect.
“Given the time of day, you will get some hang ups and maybe encounter a few grumps,” said Deena Kemp, associate director of stewardship and communications for USF Health. “However, once people learn you aren’t asking for money and only want to thank them for their gift, the tone of the call should improve.”
The student callers shared how a donation impacts the future of public health, keeps the college moving forward, and a few points of pride.
- Leading the way in distance-based education, the college offers seven master’s degrees in an online or executive weekend format, as well as 11 graduate certificates. Starting in 2014, the DrPH and bachelor of science in public health will be available in a blended format. Currently, more than 5,000 students are enrolled in online courses
- If you haven’t heard, there’s a strong undercurrent moving through the college. With more than 800 majors and 600 minors, public health undergrads are engaged in research, service to the community, and are quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with
- As a catalyst for health, we established an international hub in Panama and are extending our reach into Ecuador and Kenya; USF’s Peace Corps Master’s International Program—which includes public health and engineering—is one of the top five in the nation; Since 2008, more than 180 students traveled abroad for field experience; And, we recently launched field schools, in Malaysia and Belize
“In this economic climate it’s especially important to acknowledge supporters for their donation,” Kemp said. “The thank-a-thon serves that purpose while giving students and alumni an opportunity to connect .”
After a few minutes of stimulating conversation about all things public health, the students paused to answer questions about the college, update the person’s contact info, and invited them to connect with the COPH via Facebook and LinkedIN.
“The fall thank-a-thon was a great experience!,” said Lisa Conder, a graduate student in global health practice. “The best part was being able to connect with USF graduates …”
“One person I called said she was surprised at receiving a thank you call and it made her day. I let her know her kindness and generosity made my day and many other students as well.”
The five students made 231 calls in two hours and they still didn’t reach all of the college’s donors for 2013.
Didn’t receive a call?
Well, Lisa, Brittney, Infiniti, Dana, and Emily want to share, “The college’s success is possible because of awesome people like you! Thanks for supporting OUR College of Public Health and have a wonderful week.”
To learn more about giving opportunities with the USF College of Public Health, click here.