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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Senior Challenge to expect changes

SGA President Harry Krejsa, in collaboration with Free the Planet (FTP) and the No Limits Project (NLP), began discussion with the Administration Nov. 20 about a proposed alternative to the Senior Challenge, an unrestricted fundraising campaign directed toward seniors. The alternative plan would not replace the Senior Challenge, but instead run concurrently with it. The Senior Challenge sends all of the money it raises to the Pioneer Fund, whereas the proposed alternative would funnel the money into a restricted fund, directing the money to a specific cause.
The Pioneer Fund is where all unrestricted gifts that the College receives go. A restricted gift is given with a specific purpose in mind. Both are important ways that the College finances multiple programs and budgets, but considering the disconcerting state of Grinnell’s fund-raising efforts, as seen in recent issues of Grinnell Magazine, Krejsa wants to instigate this alternative to give people more options to give.
“Some folks from [FTP], [NLP] and SGA have been bouncing around ideas for a restricted giving campaign that would be a little more tangible,” Krejsa said. “Something that people could more easily wrap their hearts and minds around than this kind of Pioneer Fund up in the sky.”
The goal of the Senior Challenge is to encourage seniors to get into the habit of giving to the College. However, Grinnell is currently consistently defining the minimum among peer institutions in several different fund-raising categories.
“It’s primarily centered around raising participation, that is, the number of students giving something, not necessarily an amount to each student,” Krejsa said.“The Senior Challenge seems to suffer from the same problems that Grinnellian fund raising does in general.”
After FTP, NLP, and SGA presented their views to Mickey Munley, Vice-President of College and Alumni Relations, before Thanksgiving, but before and since then, all four groups have been working together to get something ready for next semester. Munley was out of town and unable to comment by press time and due to administrative offices closings, the administrative personnel was not reached for comment.
Julia Reese ’10 has already given money to the Pioneer Fund through the Senior Challenge, but says that she would prefer a system that allowed her to direct her donation.
“I definitely would [support a more directed fundraisier],”Reese said. “I understand the importance of a general fund, too. Because I don’t think understand all of the costs of associated with running a college…but I would definitely like it if I had an option to make my donation more directed.”
During Winter Break, Krejsa and representatives from FTP and NLP will meet more with the administration to figure out the details of the structure of the proposal.

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