It seems that UK universities are really starting to expand their fundraising programmes, with a big rise in the number of High Net Worth Individuals donating at least £500k rising 27% y-o-y.
However, it's interesting to compare the university projects with the fundraising success of charities. Thirty-one per cent of the UK population donates to charities at least monthly, while only 1.2% of contactable alumni donate to their alma mater.
But the growing number of donors would suggest that this rate will only increase, and universities are playing the long game when it comes to donation - the relationship with alumni over a lifetime is more important than the size of the donation this year.
What hasn't featured heavily is a recognition of the changing fundraising regime. The new Fundraising Regulator controls the regulation of university as well as charity fundraising and expects universities to pay £1000 per year towards its costs.
I don't know of any cases of fundraising malpractice among universities, but the suspicion is that this is because they haven't been as sophisticated in their tactics as charities. With those avenues now much more tightly controlled, where will alumni fundraisers turn next to meet ambitious growth targets?
Donations made to universities in the UK passed £1bn in a year for the first time, according to figures from an annual survey. According to figures from the annual Ross-Case survey on higher education giving in the UK, donations made to UK universities in 2015/16 surpassed £1bn for the first time – an increase of 23 per cent from 2014-15.