5 Booster Club “Must-Dos” around Graduation. #4 is KEY!

by Michael Garcia on May 23, 2014

It’s that time of year where the weather is nice, gowns and tassels are out and students are graduating from high school. Years of hard work have finally led to this special time in these kids’ lives and they will now embark onto the next chapter in their lives.

As a school, arts or athletic program and booster club, what should you be doing around this time to further your program and school mission as it relates to your arts or athletic program and current graduates? Here are 5 things your booster club must do:

1. Celebrate your graduates.

The focus of booster clubs and support organizations should always be on the kids and around a momentous occasion like graduation that focus should remain the same. The post-season banquet should be the venue to honor the seniors in your program, but during graduation, continue that celebration with the graduates and thank them for the great games and performances that were enjoyed because of their efforts.

2. Document where your graduates are going after high school.

Whether it’s college, military, the workforce, or yet to be determined, find out what your graduates are doing after high school and make note of it. You especially want to track the seniors that will continue with their art or athletic activity in college, because you should incorporate bringing them back for games, camps, clinics and other special events to keep them connected with not only your school, but their specific art or athletic activity.

3. Get their (new) contact information.

In almost all cases, there will be new addresses, emails and potentially (but rarely anymore) new phone numbers. This information is vital to have in order keep the graduates in touch with your high school program that they were once intimately involved with.

4. Get/maintain their parents’ contact information.

As much as keeping in touch with the graduates is important, keeping their parents connected is equally if not more important, especially when thinking about how they can affect the short term booster club fundraising.

Because schools do a poor job of keeping in touch with their alumni, parents tend to take on their children’s school as their own alma mater. They also were there through the early morning practices to the team meals before the games or performances, to the celebration after the season, so they have invested a great deal into the program as well.

The beauty of parents of alumni is that they have a lot more discretionary income to give to organizations that interest them, like booster clubs. Maintaining records of parents of alumni and continually keeping them in touch with the program is essential to have sustainable and ample funds raised every year.

5. Communicate often.

Finally, it does no good to maintain all these records without maintaining the relationships. Reach out to the graduates and their parents often and make them feel like they are a part of the tradition and lore of the program...because they are! Connect them to the current program and students and let them know that the legacy they left is continuing to grow and be successful. This does not need to be a difficult task, which is why we created the process for booster clubs to follow, as well as a booster club database that houses all these records, incorporates and automates fundraising, volunteering and advertising/sponsorship activities and, most importantly, facilitates these communication and cultivation efforts.

By capitalizing on these opportunities every year, more donations will start coming in, volunteer and game/event attendance will grow, and, by focusing your energy on the right things, your booster club will have created a successful and sustainable program that will stand the test of time.

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