Friday Sessions

Schedule for Friday, March 25, 2022. All times are Pacific Time.  If you’re a member of an institution that’s Zoom registered for the MOTM Conference, use the Zoom Session Signup page to RSVP for the sessions you’d like to attend. (Contact the main registration contact at your institution for the password, or contact us.) Note that recordings for all sessions (except in-person-only sessions as noted) will be available for viewing after the conference.  Registered in-person attendees do not need to RSVP for individual sessions.

8:00-8:50 a.m. Breakfast Breakout Sessions

What We’ve Learned in Three Years of Measuring Alumni Engagement
Jenny Cooke Smith, CASE

Now it its third year, CASE’s Alumni Engagement Metrics (AEM) survey can provide your institution with benchmarks and insights to help shape strategies and set goals. By collecting counts of alumni engaged philanthropically, as volunteers, experientially, and through communication, the survey provides a framework for measuring engagement consistently across the globe. In this session, you’ll learn which alumni are most likely to engage, how to discuss the pipeline between engagement and giving, and tips for replacing participation with engagement as a proxy for alumni affinity. This session will provide you with a path forward, whether you are just beginning to make the case for capturing data and collaborating beyond the advancement office, or setting strategies using engagement benchmarking results.

What Have I Gotten Myself Into? Everything You Need to Know When Going Into Advancement Services!
Valerie Nguyen, California State University, Dominguez Hills

Valerie Nguyen works in a small shop, where she has acquired a lot of advancement services skills – out of necessity!  If you’re newer to the profession, Valerie will take you on a tour of how gifts and data flow through the CSU Dominguez Hills advancement program – and the important obstacles she’s learned to navigate along the way.

You Had Me at <Record>:
Your Full Personal Video Fundraising Repertoire
Amanda Baca, University of New Mexico
NOTE: This session has now been pre-recorded and will not be live.
It can be watched anytime here: https://youtu.be/lKRTJs-mMhM

From getting prospect appointments to showing (continual) appreciation, video has become an essential tool in fundraising. Hear how one fundraising team used the online video creation platform BombBom to engage a global portfolio of prospects, collect video from a global set of beneficiaries, steward its donors and discover other innovative uses as well.


9:00-10:15 a.m. Breakout Sessions

Writing for Philanthropy: The Three Dimensions of Language
Frank Dickerson, PhD, Principal, Narrative Fundraising

You know a good story when you see one. But do You know what makes a good story good? Learn how to write in the three dimensions of narrative. Dr. Frank Dickerson has conducted extensive research on how organizations write for philanthropy. Come and learn about some of his favorite data-driven findings, with some concrete take-aways and lessons learned.

Project Management for Development Professionals
Amy Hanson & Mark Longo, Caltech
Download the Slides and Handouts for this Session.

The fundamental goal of project management is to produce the desired results, on time and on budget. In this session, two development professionals who utilize project management skills in their day-to-day work will share how to successfully manage any project while eliminating bureaucracy and red tape. Topics covered will include:
• key terminology
• project management phases and the project manager’s role in each phase
• tools and techniques for effective project management
• how to create a project plan and prepare for the project kickoff meeting
Participants will leave this session with essential project management skills that can be applied immediately to advance their development careers!

Using an Advancement Lens Towards DEI
Natalie Graff and Arah Parker, Cal Poly Pomona University

In response to social justice issues surrounding the murder of George Floyd in 2020, Cal Poly Pomona committed to improve transparency and diversity, equity and inclusion efforts across its campus. University Advancement launched an Anti-Bias Initiative by creating a working group to assess needs and challenges in the division specifically using an advancement lens. The initial working group created sub committees that conducted research, identified key internal and external stakeholders, assessed data points, resulting in actionable items to systematically move the Division of Advancement towards a more healthy, diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment.


10:30-11:45 p.m. Breakout Sessions

Women in Leadership in Advancement
Kalyn Rose Miller and Gizel Avina, Drucker School of Management, Claremont Graduate University, with Monika Moore, Scripps College, Robin Savoian, LA Zoo, and Kristen Andersen-Daley, CGU

Women make up the majority of nonprofit employees, yet they are underrepresented in leadership positions across nonprofit organizations. In this panel, we bring together women leaders and aspiring women leaders of nonprofits to engage in discussion about relevant issues and foster meaningful relationships. How can we understand both the challenges and the opportunities presented by women’s leadership? How do issues like gender roles, work-life balance, and mentorship shape women’s leadership?

The New Career Services: Helping Students, Grads, and Alumni Launch & Lead Successful Careers in a Post Pandemic Employment Market!
Don Philabaum, CEO, TalentMarks

Richard Bolles, author of the enormously successful career book, “What Color is Your Parachute?,” once said, “A working alum is a giving alum!” We’ll look at turnkey career, and professional development strategies that will help your admissions team enroll more students, your alumni staff increase alumni satisfaction and engagement, and your annual giving and advancement team not only increase the number of alumni and parents who give but the frequency they give! You will learn why giving rates will be tied to the post-pandemic employment market.


12:00-1:00 p.m. Closing Session

Fundraising, the Economy, and the Coronavirus: Where Do We Go From Here?
Bob Burdenski, John Taylor, conference co-chairs,

Last year’s Meeting of the Minds Conference was turned upside down by the Coronavirus, and this year remained the same. As our now-online conference ends, what’s the “new normal,” and where does fundraising go from here? With the continuing impacts on one’s health family, job, investments, feelings of security and expectations about the future, it remains a new fundraising world — at least for now. A closing session with some thoughts and ideas for tomorrow, along with recommendations for must-see sessions now in the conference video archive!