How to be a GREAT class agent
There are some basic steps that make a good class agent a great one!
Fundraising for Athens College is a partnership between the College’s professional development team and our alumni volunteers. As a class agent, you play an essential role in that partnership.
- First, you are a partner of the College and the Development Office.
- Second, you are a communicator, keeping your classmates informed and engaged.
- Third, you are a fundraising officer, soliciting gifts and helping alumni understand how important their support is to current students and to the College’s continued success.
Stay in touch. The Development Office and Alumni Fund Drive teams are here to help you do this important work.
Step one: Be a partner of the College and the Development Office
You are the School’s Ambassador and direct link to your classmates.
- Be an active and engaged partner.
- Inform the School about classmates’ updated contact details; classmates’ professional standing, positions and special achievements; major class events and activities (reunions, regular meetings, etc.); alumni that can or are interested to give, host an event, be a speaker, host a young alumnus or student studying abroad, be a mentor and more.
- Identify past scholars and secure stories and voices depicting impact.
- Participate at class agent working groups and class agents’ annual meetings.
- Participate in the design and give feedback to the Annual Fund campaigns.
- Be present at major School, SAKA (ie. Alumni Day) and fundraising events and participate actively in the design and implementation of the Athens College 2025 Centennial Campaign and celebrations.
- Share and promote School (fundraising) news and opportunities, fundraising events (theater plays, concert etc.).
Athens College and the Development Office/Fund Drive post regularly on social media. Reposting is instrumental in building awareness and engaging fellow alumni.
Development team is at your disposal to share information, strategy and help you plan.
- Works with class agents to develop and execute an outreach plan that best suits their class, talents and connections.
- Prepares and dispatches Annual Fund information, materials, goals and appeals.
- Provides information needed for outreach plan implementation, including the Athens College 2025 Centennial Campaign and celebrations plan.
- Sends regular updates, sharing School and development news, reasons for giving, giving opportunities and ways to give.
- Organizes working groups and meetings.
- Supports organization of milestone 25-year and 50-year reunions, including the ones on the 2025 Centennial Campaign celebrations.
- Responds to specific class needs.
Step two: Generate excitement and strengthen connections
Many of your classmates may not feel a strong sense of connection to Athens College. Your role is to reinforce that connection.
- Get in touch with your classmates using the contact information provided by the College and update their contact details.
- Track down “lost” classmates.
- Identify and engage other classmates — starting from reaching out to ones you are closest — that can further enhance your role and build a team to enrich your class representation. “One for All & All for One”.
- Bridge classmates with one another and connect them with the College.
- Follow your classmates’ life journeys.
- Make it personal. Use the appropriate channels for each classmate — calls, texts, mail, email, social media, or in-person visits.
- Email is good. Calling is better. Face-to-face is the best (FaceTime and Skype are good options, too!) but try to create opportunities to meet classmates regularly.
- Be an advocate for Athens College and share regular updates throughout the year.
- Use social media to build community, reminisce about your School years and promote the College.
- One of the best ways to create a sense of community and excitement is through your class’s Facebook group. Curate it, share information and events, post photos from then and now, ask questions about your time at the College, or post a survey.
- Encourage classmates to participate at School, SAKA (ie. Alumni Day) and fundraising events and actions, including the Athens College 2025 Centennial Campaign and celebrations.
- Organize reunions, events and create meeting and networking opportunities (see more tips in other sections).
Development team supports your community building efforts.
- Provides contact lists and incorporates updates you are providing.
- Shares additional information on classmate.
- Shares tools that can be used and updates on new tools and material.
- Regularly shares information on School news, events and other engagement activities.
- Responds to specific class needs.
Step three: Ask for support
Every year, hundreds of alumni make gifts to Athens College. Your role is to help classmates understand the impact of alumni giving and to ask for their support. The Athens College fiscal year runs from September 1 to August 31.
- Lead by example: make your gift before reaching out to your classmates. Then ask them to join you in supporting the College.
- Build on related communication sent by the School, namely Annual Fund campaigns and other. In 2019, for the first time, an e-Christmas holiday appeal to support the Annual Fund campaign was introduced. A solicitation letter was sent to all alumni/ae, with a holiday twist.
- Share information and posts on Annual Fund, other giving opportunity options, ways to give, donor acknowledgement with all classmates.
- Collaborate with the School to identify specific class giving projects and ways to report on or recognize them.
- Encourage classmates to make a gift this year and/or a commitment for recurring years. You may want to urge them to choose a common project to support as a class.
- Set goals for giving and for participation and share the overall goal and plan of the Athens College 2025 Centennial Campaign and celebrations, urging them to contribute both by giving and actively participating.
- Capitalize on class events to promote collective as well as individual giving.
- Choose the classmates you would like to follow-up with individually.
- Provide regular feedback to classmates on your class giving progress and participation goals.
- Inform the School regularly on your class giving progress and participation goals.
- Thank everyone who makes a gift!
Development team supports you in goal setting and monitoring of class giving progress and participation goals.
- Develops a fundraising plan that leverages class agents’ talents and connections.
- Communicates the overall School fundraising strategy, including the Athens College 2025 Centennial Campaign and celebrations.
- Makes sure that volunteers can easily and in timely manner access giving and contact information for their outreach.
- Coordinates progress through regular conference calls, emails, and visits.
- Shares a timeline of events and actions to reinforce class agents’ efforts.
- Produces templates that can easily be shared, personalized and reproduced.
- Gives specific instructions on the strategy to be shared.
- Responds to specific class needs.