Revenue-Generating Programs: Villanova University - Silver Award

Category 1E: Alumni Relations Programs – Revenue-Generating Programs
Villanova University
Corporate Partnership Program & Guide
Silver Award

Amy Layman
Senior Associate Director of Alumni Affairs
Office of Alumni Affairs
Alumni House
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, PA 19085

(610) 519-4580

Gary Olsen, Associate Vice President for Alumni Affairs
Pat Gillin, Manager, Corporate Partnerships
Helen Major, Assistant Director, Marketing and Communication
Frank Boulton, Alumni Volunteer

Number of staff working on the program

  • Two professional staff from the Office of Alumni Affairs - Marketing
  • Two professional staff from the Office of Alumni Affairs - Program Management
  • One alumni volunteer advisor
  • Four alumni volunteers from Villanova University Alumni Association Board of Directors committee

The Villanova University Alumni Association has established a varied portfolio of corporate partnerships, including sponsorships and royalty partnerships with insurance, telecommunication, and travel companies, a unique campus arrangement to share a portion of profits with the campus' University Shop catalog and online sales, collaboration with University Athletics to equally divide credit card revenue, partnerships with local businesses and trade arrangements with the Villanova Conference Center and several campus departments. In addition, Ford's "Nova Plan" offers alumni and their families the opportunity to purchase or lease a new vehicle at or near invoice from a Villanova area dealer.

The success of the corporate partnership program, including a 48% growth in revenues over 5 years, has generated significant interest among alumni and Villanova area companies. For years Alumni Association staff fielded individual inquiries with regard to becoming a corporate partner, how to sponsor an event or how to advertise in Villanova marketing materials.

In 2007, with the assistance of an alumnus with experience in corporate partnership development, the Villanova University Alumni Association developed a Partnership Guide to provide a concise and consistent response to alumni, businesses and corporations interested in partnering with the Association to reach their marketing goals. During this project, the Association also reviewed its fee structure through benchmarking with professional alumni organizations and other associations.

The Villanova University Alumni Association Partnership Guide is a perfect "next step" in the development of a prospective partner or sponsor. Once initial contact is made, the Partnership Guide is mailed or emailed along with a letter of introduction. The Partnership Guide allows easy follow-up as the prospect can determine which campus event or regional activity best fits the company's needs and marketing budget. The guide has also been beneficial in reducing or eliminating staff time spent on small budget initiatives.

We believe the Villanova Corporate Partners Program helps Association partners showcase their companies and achieve their marketing goals, offers our alumni exceptional benefits and services, and provides additional source of revenue that allows VUAA to continue and expand alumni engagement programs. The development of the Partners Guide has brought a professionalism and formality to all partnership discussions, has elevated the profile of this program in the eyes of current and prospective partners and has assisted in streamlining work processes related to this program.

Goals & Objectives

  • To demonstrate the value of a corporate partnership with the Villanova University Alumni Association through the development of a professional Corporate Partnership Guide.
  • To increase the quality, breadth and number of programs and services offered to 92,000+ Villanova University graduates through additional revenue generation.
  • To provide valuable benefit programs such as first class travel opportunities, access to event and conference facilities, a unique auto purchase/lease program, and discounted rates for a variety of insurance, hotel, phone and credit card programs.
  • To raise the profile of the Alumni Association with key alumni in decision making positions within their companies.
  • To increase revenue generated through the Corporate Partnership Program.

    Target Audience
    The criteria established for direct membership in the chapter included:

    • Alumni and other University constituents with ties to businesses that may provide services and sponsorship dollars.
    • 92,000+ alumni who may take advantage of the increased program offerings as a result of revenue generation.

      Number of Participants
      Approximately 20,000 alumni take advantage of one or more of the programs offered by Alumni Association corporate partners.

      Program Budget
      The annual budget necessary to support the program is less than $500. Cost to print the initial 250 brochures was less than $2,500 which includes the cost of printing and purchase of photography.

      Projected FY2008 revenue generated through the Villanova University Alumni Association's Corporate Partnership Program totals $410,000, which accounts 25% of the Alumni Office's operating budget.

      Through the revenue generated from this program, the Alumni Office has increased the quality and sophistication of its benefits, services and programming despite budget cuts and an additional 2,000+ customers each year. For the first time in 15 years, and as a direct result of the corporate partnership program, the Alumni Office was able to develop two new full-time positions and expanded two part-time positions to full time, produced an Annual Report, and added new features to NovaNetworkTM, the Alumni Online Community.