Professional Fundraising Series for
Deans and Academic Leaders (PFSDAL)

On behalf of the University of Tennessee Foundation, we invite you to join us for a virtual workshop series to help expand and strengthen the partnership between the institution’s academic priorities and the philanthropic passion of our donors.

The Professional Fundraising Series for Deans and Academic Leaders is a comprehensive, highly interactive, three-part workshop series that explores the essential roles that deans, senior faculty and other academic leaders play in helping donors and potential donors make significant contributions to the institution. Academic leaders participate in the virtual workshops along with development partners from the UT Foundation, creating collaborative partnerships in the advancement of the University of Tennessee.

This three-part virtual workshop series begins June 2022 and runs through spring 2023. It is presented by Advancement Resources, a global leader in professional development education in philanthropy.

Contact: Rachael LeBlanc
Director of Foundation Programs
(865) 974-2325
[email protected]

Session Three

PFSDAL #3: Skills and Tactics for Transformational Philanthropy

Wednesday, April 12, 2023
9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EST / 9:00 a.m – 11:30 a.m. CST

Skills and Tactics for Transformational Philanthropy prepares deans and other academic and organizational leaders to carry their vision into the community, interact effectively with donors, and secure financial commitment. Additionally, participants explore concepts for leveraging volunteers and board members.

  • Pre-Work: Participants identify potential donors with whom they will soon meet to apply concepts from the workshop.
  • Introduction: Review of key concepts from previous sessions.
  • Carrying Your Vision into the Community: Concepts, processes, and tools for effective interactions with donors and potential donors in three settings: social situations, events, and donor meetings.
  • Securing Financial Commitment: An exploration of the Strategic Elements of Inviting Financial Commitment and concepts and processes for making an effective “ask.”
  • Engaging Board Members and Key Volunteers: An overview of current trends in volunteer engagement and an examination of the Five Keys to a Successful Volunteer Program, with application of each to participants’ real-world situations.

Session Two

PFSDAL #2: Inspiring Philanthropic Support

Wednesday, January 4, 2023 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EST / 7:30 a.m – 11:30 a.m. CST

Inspiring Philanthropic Support is an advanced working session in which participants apply concepts for defining their vision as a philanthropic opportunity, applying the Opportunity Story model for their larger initiatives. Participants will also learn methods of discussing philanthropic opportunities with donors in a way that inspires action.
  • Pre-Work: Participants identify their funding priorities and consider each in light of predictable donor questions.
  • Introduction: Review of key donor perspectives from the previous session.
  • Translating Your Vision into a Compelling Philanthropic Opportunity: Exploration of a clearly defined model for crafting funding priorities as inspiring Opportunity Stories that compel deep and lasting commitment from donors, with application of the model to participants’ own funding priorities.
  • Articulating Your Compelling Opportunity Story: An examination of three primary audiences for an Opportunity Story and points for sharing with individuals, followed by an opportunity for participants to share their stories to gain feedback and build confidence.

Session One

PFSDAL #1: Advancing Higher Education Through Philanthropy

Monday, June 6, 2022
8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EST / 7:30 a.m – 11:30 a.m. CST

Advancing Higher Education Through Philanthropy is the first session in the series and provides an understanding of philanthropy and the donor development process, along with concepts, processes, and tools for donor engagement. Content is based on exploring commonly held myths about development and delineating roles of academic leaders and development professionals in donor engagement and solicitation. The syllabus includes:
  • Introduction: An overview of the research that serves as the basis for the series, insights into current trends in philanthropy, and critical development roles for academic leaders.
  • Donor Motivation: The philanthropic process from the donor’s perspective, plus concepts, process, and tools for deepening donor commitment to organizational priorities.
  • Building a Development Culture: Concepts for building a robust culture of philanthropy, plus critical development roles for faculty, key volunteers, and board members.
  • Creating Meaningful Return on Philanthropic Investment: An exploration of the three components of Return on Philanthropic Investment (stewardship), deepening commitment and paving the way for a lasting philanthropic relationship.