A scholarship program report is a valuable tool for both a scholarship donor, and a program manager. It is an easy way for donors to track their financial contributions, and helps program managers see who aided the most in this term period. It also provides donors with information on the accomplishments of the scholarship program and provides insights in terms of how they can help make improvements.
Having a report to provide each scholarship donor is a sign of respect and transparency, and can go a long way toward keeping them involved in your program. Below we will discuss how to create an effective scholarship program report to share with donors.
Qualifying requirements are the eligibility criteria set by your organization. These determine whether students are qualified to receive scholarships. Some examples of qualifying requirements are GPA, family income level, specific major/degree, involvement in community service or activities, etc… Creating a list of qualifying student characteristics allows you to share with donors the types of students their donations are benefiting.
When determining your needs for the upcoming academic year, try to estimate how many scholarships you will award per academic semester or quarter. Qualifying requirements and the number of awards per semester/quarter will help you determine how much money you will need in your scholarship fund to ensure it is fully funded.
When determining the scholarship qualifications, be sure to make it clear that your organization is committed to helping students achieve their educational goals and rewarding them for taking steps in the right direction with their lives. Be brief yet thorough in the information you provide to scholarship donors. They don’t want to read a book, but they do want tangible proof that their dollars are making a difference.
Creating reports for each scholarship donor satisfies two purposes. First, it measures the effectiveness of your program to determine whether you need to make changes for future years. Second, it lets donors know that their money is being put towards a worthy cause, and that they are directly impacting students' lives.
When creating scholarship reports for donors, it's important to remember three key things.
The easiest method for creating scholarship donor reports is with SmarterSelect application management software.
It’s that quick and painless. A few clicks and you will have everything you need in one easy to digest report. Make sure to include data from the period for which you are reporting. It’s also important to include any metrics that you think donors will find helpful, such as the number of applications received vs. the scholarships awarded, the total dollar amount of scholarship funds available, and the average scholarship amount.
Most importantly, make sure you know what your scholarship donors will want to see (i.e. what data they will be looking for). It may be helpful to ask your donors what metrics and information they want when onboarding so you can track this information and include it in future reports.
Another way to measure the success of your scholarship program is by rewarding and recognizing members who best match the program criteria. For example, you can create a distinction for scholars who complete their degree in the time you were expecting.
Another great way to reward and recognize members is by creating an annual event that brings together all of your scholarship recipients. This allows them to connect and network with other students who have common goals and academic interests. This type of event also offers an opportunity for your scholarship program to be publicly recognized, thus creating more awareness about the work you are doing.
You can even create a private event just for donors who made this scholarship program possible as a way to say thank you and allow them to enjoy seeing their impact on students' lives. Furthermore, you can shout out your donors on social media, on your website, and in your newsletters.
Finally, you can develop a process for publicly recognizing donors who make significant contributions. This could mean inviting them to join you for any media appearances, or making a point to mention them in any print media you are featured in. Or it could mean recognizing them in your award announcements, featuring them multiple times on your social media and newsletters, or giving them a larger section of mention on your website.
All of these ideas will help keep each scholarship donor engaged while celebrating the success of your program!
Creating a report for donors is just one of many essential steps in nurturing relationships with them. It's important to understand what motivates your individual donors, and allow them to see how they are helping students succeed. These reports are not just a great way to share your success, but also to share the stories of students they are helping through the scholarship program. Simple actions such as this allow your donors to see firsthand what their contributions are doing for students' lives.
You can also use the report to engage with future donors who want to get involved by highlighting the program's successes. Your scholarship program report should be a tool that makes it easy for donors to see their impact (or potential impact) on a program overall. You want them to feel pride in their contributions, enthusiasm about being part of something meaningful, and have a sense of satisfaction knowing every donation truly makes an impact.
Learn more about SmarterSelect application management software and see what it can do for your scholarship programs. Click here to start your free trial now.