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Rampage Columns

Ring, Ring! It's Phonathon!

Feb 17, 2012

It’s my second year of Phonathon, which means that it is my second year of calling BC friends and alumni and asking them if they would be willing to make a donation to the BC Fund for Scholars. It’s a really great fund, by the way, because it helps students like me attend school here.


“I’m sorry but it just won’t fit into our budget.”

 “This just isn’t a very good time.”

 “We’re eating dinner.”

 “I guess I could do that.”

 “Could you send me some information?”

 “I don’t think I really want to talk to you.”


And so goes a night of Phonathon. We talk to our fellow callers as the phone rings.


Confirm name pronunciations, check out the prize wheel, go over what we’re going to say.


“My name is Lydia. I’m a student at Bluefield College. This winter has been unusually warm, and it’s only snowed twice. Can you believe that?”


“Global warming? Maybe.” I give a laugh. “But what I’m really calling about tonight is:” insert script.


The three things you hear the most:

1) “I’m sorry, the number you are trying to reach has been disconnected.”

2) “I’m sorry, the caller you are trying to reach does not want to talk to callers who block their numbers.”

3) “We’re not home right now, so leave a message after the beep!”     


When we get a new donor, a victory cheer ensues. We’re not greedy. But anything to break up the constant stream of rejection is like water to the perishing.


We can appreciate it if you want to ask us about the new football team. We’ll laugh at the stories you can tell from your times at the school. We’ll listen if you ask us to. 


What you may not know is that every donation helps, no matter the size. Every donation increases our alumni-giving rate, which increases the school’s eligibility for more grants. Even a dollar is helping to secure a college education for the future students of BC.


But we understand when you still say no. We understand that you just lost your job, that medical bills are piling up, that you donate to another school. It’s OK. Thanks anyway. I hope you have a wonderful evening.