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Reply To: Scholarship Promotion

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Alastair Lee
Forum Participant

Hi Marji,

I’ve had much experience in this area over the years with niche scholarships and donors (including my time at UTAS) – here are some ideas that you could consider re: promotions:

+Collaborate with local metalwork or woodworking businesses: They may be interested in supporting and mentoring scholarship recipients too. This collaboration can create a more practical and hands-on learning experience for students and provide some great promo opps.

+Community Workshops and Events: Organise small workshops or events related to metalwork and woodworking that are open to the community (even as part of tour mornings/open days). This will help generate interest and showcase the possibilities. Hands-on demonstrations and interactions with teachers etc can also provide a firsthand experience of what the scholarship program offers and generate some excitement/interest (and evergreen socials content).

+Social media: Share success stories (and often) of alumni who work in the field and highlight student projects giving behind-the-scenes glimpses of your programs. Consider too targeted SM advertising to reach potential students with an interest in these areas. Important to emphasise any unique features or opportunities that your metalwork and woodworking program offers.

+Competition: If you go down the competition route, ensure that it is widely publicised. Use all your platforms too e.g. social media, school newsletters, industry newsletters and even the Mercury, to spread the word. Consider collaborating with industry influencers or professionals to judge the competition or advocate for it in their industries (alumni connections working in the fields here can be very handy).

Lastly (and I’ve had to do this too several times), if filling the scholarship eventually becomes too hard, if might be time to sit down with the donor (be very transparent with them) and negotiate wider ranging criteria or if that doesn’t work then consider stepping away (worst case scenario obviously but sometimes it is necessary to avoid damaging the relationship beyond repair). Ultimately, it is the sign of a very mature and transparent fundraising organisation that can do this (which I believe Hutchins certainly is).

Hope this may help.

Kind regards – Alastair Lee AlumGrow Consultancy

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