On 8 December, a fundraising workshop took place in the main building's conference hall. The event was organised by the VSU Department of Innovations and Enterprise Management based upon a grant contest from the Vladimir Potanin Foundation "Endowment funds: growth strategy" prorgramme. The aim of the event was to help representatives of academic communities to acquire fundraising expertise. The speakers of the workshop shared their fundraising experience with the participants.
The rector of VSU, Professor Dmitry Endovitsky, welcomed the participants of the event:
“Fundraising is a novelty for Russian universities. People sometimes like to thank their alma mater. If the university provided them with a good start and if it helped them to build their career they feel it is their duty to contribute to its development. I learnt about endowment while I was doing an internship in Ireland. The first thing we saw when we arrived at the National University of Ireland (Galway) was a wonderful library that was funded by a grateful graduate. Fundraising is a very difficult job which needs a systematic approach. A very important channel for this is the VSU Alumni Associations for foreign students.”
The rector’s speech was followed by vice-rector for Innovations and Technology Commercialization, director of the VSU Endowment Fund, Tatiana Davydenko:
“Our endowment fund was founded in 2013. The fund currently offers a considerable amount of money – 18 million roubles. We have noticed that each year it is getting more and more difficult to raise money, that is why it is very important that this workshop, supported by the Potanin Foundation, is held in Voronezh. Today, I wish all of us to find new efficient methods and ways to raise money for the VSU Endowment Fund, as it is an investment into the future of our university”.
During the workshop, the head of the VSU Cultural Centre, Tamara Diakova, gave a presentation about the VSU Endowment Fund; the director of Potanin Foundation programmes, Ekaterina Levshina, told the audience about the programme "Endowment funds: growth strategy"; and the rector’s counsellor on financial and economic matters, executive director of the Saint Petersburg European University Foundation, Svetlana Lavrova, shared her experience of systematic fundraising at the Saint Petersburg European University Foundation. Representatives of non-commercial organisations (Dobrosvet foundation and Parus Nadezhdy rehabilitation centre) also shared their experiences. The participants also discussed issues related to dealing with contributors (internal and external stakeholders) and the formation of endowments. A student’s fundraising project was also presented during the workshop.