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Penn's Way: A 'Side by Side' Campaign

In an effort to maximize options for our employees, while minimizing administrative fees, I am pleased to announce that Penn will partner with both the Center for Responsible Funding and the United Way to manage this year's Penn's Way charitable donations campaign.

It was determined that if the Center for Responsible Funding was selected to manage the entire Penn's Way Campaign, there would be a significant "double hit" of administrative fees on funds raised for United Way agencies. This would not be the case if the campaign were run by the United Way. This distinction is very important because approximately 75 percent of the funds raised through the Penn's Way campaign are channeled through the United Way.

In last year's campaign, for example, $230,000 was raised, of which $173,000 went to United Way agencies. In other words, of the $173,000, 11.7 percent was "charged" by the United Way for administration. If the Center for Responsible Funding had handled these transactions, there would have been an 11.5 percent charge from the Center added to the 11.7 percent by United Way. As a result, the total administrative fee for 75 percent of the funds raised at Penn would have been 23.2 percent ­ which would have amounted to $40,000, as compared to $20,000.

This year marks the first "Side by Side" campaign, in which the United Way will manage a traditional United Way campaign on our behalf, and the Center will manage a parallel campaign for the partner organizations (Bread & Roses Community Fund, Catholic Charities Appeal, Environmental Fund for Pennsylvania, Federation of Allied Jewish Appeal, the United Negro College Fund, Inc., Womans Way, AIDS Fund, Black United Fund of PA, Inc.). While we chose the United Way so as to minimize administrative fees to United Way participants, we chose the Center to manage the Partner organizations campaign based on campus feedback on other issues such as independent management. Although this will be a Side by Side campaign, we anticipate that there will only be one mailing, a consistent and clear set of materials, and a single letter sent on behalf of Penn's Way.

We are currently finalizing the operational details of this campaign and I look forward to this being the most successful Penn's Way to date.

--John A. Fry
Executive Vice President

Return to:Almanac, University of Pennsylvania, November 11, 1997, Volume 44, No. 12