Dear OSU and OSU Foundation Colleagues,

Thanks to all of you, the Foundation recently surpassed its $103M baseline fundraising goal for fiscal year 2017. We are now moving toward our stretch goal of $126M and I want to express great appreciation for all you do to rally enthusiasm and generate resources for all that makes OSU great. 

Recent Giving Stories

Alumni Affinity Survey

Engagement – with larger and broader groups of OSU constituents – is critically important as we prepare for the next, and all future fundraising campaigns. To that end, we recently partnered with the OSU Alumni Association to survey more than 79,000 alumni – and had more than 9,000 responses – to gauge their affinity and enthusiasm for the university. The methodology behind the survey is based on College of Business professor Dr. Jim McAlexander's research on building brand communities. The survey measures the overall vitality of our alumni community by evaluating responses based on peer relationships, education, OSU brand identity and institutional interaction. 

When we asked about key relationships with the university, we found – not surprisingly – that the top 3 areas of affinity are the university as a whole (29.9%), department or degree program (26.6%) and athletics (12.4%). As volunteers are key to our engagement strategy, we also asked about areas of most interest for volunteering and found that the top areas are: participating in short surveys (58.8%), participating in a service project (57%), and mentoring a current student (48.5%). 

Lastly, we learned that 30% of respondents plan to make a gift to OSU in the next 12 months – great news from a fundraising perspective – and that many have included OSU in their estate plans. All of the survey results are being analyzed by Foundation and Alumni Association staff to help us reach out to and engage OSU’s friends and alumni in more and more meaningful ways.

New Development Staff

  • Jacob Kirkham is our new Assistant Athletic Director for Development, Major Gifts. Jacob comes to us from West Virginia University where he held a similar position and has also held fundraising positions at the University of Utah (where he earned his bachelor’s degree). He also earned a master’s in sports management from Ohio University.

Upcoming Events

All of us play a role in engaging OSU’s many constituents and stakeholders. Events and activities are important in inspiring investment in OSU’s students, faculty and programs. Put simply, our friends, alumni and parents who participate in the life of the university are more likely to support the university, which includes making gifts to the university.

Apr. 6 – Alumni Reception, Seoul, South Korea  NEW!
Apr. 18 – Provost’s Lecture Series: Maya Lin, artist and designer, Corvallis
Apr. 29 – OSU Night at the Symphony, Portland  NEW!
Jun. 10 – Rose Festival Grand Floral Parade Viewing Party, Portland  NEW!
Jun. 26 – The Partners Group Ossey Golf Scramble, Tualatin  NEW!
Nov. 16 – President’s Dinner, Portland

This month the Alumni Association sent a “thank you” postcard – signed by President Ray and Kathy Bickel – to about 250 university volunteers as part of Volunteer Appreciation Week. Acknowledging our volunteers – who play such a big role in events and activities all year long – is something we all have a stake in and I appreciate the many ways this happens across campus. Best wishes as the spring term gets underway.

Executive Vice President
OSU Foundation

P.S.: OSU Foundation Email – On a final “housekeeping” note, the OSU Foundation has now migrated to a new email system. All OSU Foundation email addresses have moved from the university’s “” extension to the Foundation’s own “” extension. The .org domain reflects our distinct non-profit status.