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Career & Professional Development

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Talking Shop: The Upside of Chaos
CURRENTS Article Joan Garry, principal of Joan Garry Consulting, believes the best nonprofits are like twin-engine jets. In advancement, the board chair and institution president are co-pilots. The staff and lead volunteer engines need to be strong, effective, and efficient. But, of course, there will always be turbulence. "If you haven't had a crisis at an institution, it's not because you're good—it's because you're lucky," she warns. The author of Joan Garry's Guide to Nonprofit Leadership, Garry shares advice on dealing with disorder.

Are You an Advancement VP of a Different Stripe?
CURRENTS Article Even if alumni relations professionals are leaders in their field, they often hit roadblocks on the path to the advancement vice presidency. Despite these candidates’ qualifications, search committees rarely gamble on someone lacking fundraising experience. Learn how exceptional leaders in alumni relations can prove their philanthropic prowess and become executive leaders of an advancement team.

CURRENTS Article Advice on how to respond to inappropriate comments from donors; and tricks to digitally unplug.

Book [Club] Report—An Alumna’s View
CURRENTS Article CASE Online Communications Specialist Meredith Barnett has participated in her alma mater’s alumni-student book club for the past two years, leading discussions with incoming freshmen about the reading selections and talking with them about her own time as a student. Here’s her perspective on how books can spark connections.

Beware of Gifts That Eat
CURRENTS Article I can hardly believe that this year marks my 30th anniversary in the field of fundraising. Ever since I fell into a development job right out of college with my newly minted journalism degree, fundraising is pretty much the only thing I’ve done. When I haven’t been securing philanthropic gifts at work, I’ve been called into service at my church, the kids’ schools, and countless other worthwhile charitable endeavors. I guess I’m a one-trick pony in that regard. And I’ve loved every minute of it. Fundraising can also at times be heartbreaking, exasperating, counterintuitive, and consuming, but above all it’s gratifying. Between you and me, here’s some frank insight on less-discussed aspects of the profession.

Family Matters
CURRENTS Article For busy advancement officers, the line between their professional and personal lives blurs easily and often. Alumni relations staff frequently work evenings and weekends; development officers can travel several times a month to visit donors; social media directors monitor, respond, and post content 24/7. In a recent work-life balance survey, 68 percent of advancement professionals reported working 45 hours or more per week, and 30 percent said that work often interferes with their personal lives. These unpredictable schedules can take a toll on families. So how can you align your personal and professional relationships in a healthy way? Here's how to stay married to your partner and not wedded to your job.

5 Ways to Nurture New Talent
CURRENTS Article Despite a growing need for fundraisers, recruiters are struggling to find talent. Degree programs in advancement remain rare (although notable ones include the U.K.'s University of Chichester's charity development degree and the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University), and the field is frequently misunderstood. "Advancement, especially development, is often viewed as a sales profession," says Zachary Smith, a senior partner and deputy managing director at the recruiting firm Witt/Kieffer. "Most people only see advancement professionals schmoozing donors at coffees, lunches, dinners, and events. They don't see the work that takes place in between." So how can institutions attract talented graduates to the field—and how can they keep them there? Read on for ways to grow and retain your team's newest advancement professionals.

CURRENTS Article Advice on handling donor information learned during a previous position, and members share what app changed their life.

Talking Shop: Raising Gifts, Sharing GIFs
CURRENTS Article Rory Green is a second-generation development officer—both of her parents were fundraisers—and the founder of Fundraiser Grrl, a cheeky crowdsourced blog about the rewarding, frustrating, and downright outlandish things fundraisers experience. Through the GIF-driven posts, fundraisers both celebrate and gripe about their professional lives. Face palms, snark, and funny tales abound.

Office Space: Is It Time to Pursue an Advanced Degree?
CURRENTS Article Pursuing additional education is almost always a good thing, but time, money, family, and professional workload are important considerations. Given our relationship as both employees of and passionate advocates for our institutions, it's natural to reflect on our own education—and whether earning an advanced degree may be advantageous for our careers. If you work for a college or university that offers tuition reimbursement, cost may be less of a concern when answering the questions above—but that's only one factor in the equation. Other considerations for busy professionals include work travel, family responsibilities, and community commitments.

Office Space: Grow Your Own Communications Talent
CURRENTS Article Duke ProComm, a professional development program for communicators at Duke University in North Carolina, trains communicators with varying levels of expertise and at different stages of their career. Many entry-level communicators arrive with a specific skill set, but in today's environment you need to know how to tell a story using text, images, audio, and video, and you must promote your work on a variety of platforms and channels. The ProComm program helps communicators enhance their skills, find mentors, and prepare for future communication opportunities.

So You Want to Be the VP?
CURRENTS Article Search firm executive Dennis Barden shares what institutions want—and need—and how aspirants can prepare to be the vice president of advancement.

Putting Success in Succession Planning
CURRENTS Article Michael Eicher, senior vice president of advancement at The Ohio State University, has a strong track record of cultivating advancement, fundraising, and communications vice presidents and vice chancellors. He talks to CURRENTS about succession planning.

Outlook: Producing High Performers
CURRENTS Article Using donors to train gift officers is just one way development shops should be rethinking talent management, including recruitment. Too often vice presidents are attracted to fundraisers who have secured a mega-gift, even if the gift was years in the making and cultivated by predecessors. VPs think top performers are a canned product that can be easily found and recruited at high salaries.They'd be better off building their own superstars by hiring passionate, driven fundraisers who understand the process and pace of fundraising.

Odds and Ends: Jersey Jazz Meets Abbey Road
CURRENTS Article In May 2014, Paul McCartney proposed that band leader John Pizzarelli translate his post-Beatles songs into a jazz album, culminating in the recently released Midnight McCartney, which will become part of Pizzarelli's repertoire as he performs on college campuses and teaches master classes.

Office Space: Keep on Keepin’ Up
CURRENTS Article Advancement veterans share their tips for remaining professionally agile.

My First Year in Alumni Relations
CURRENTS Article A 25-year-old assistant director of alumni relations shares the lessons learned during her first year at Williston Northampton School.

Reflecting One Year Out
CURRENTS Article A 25-year-old assistant director of alumni relations shares the lessons learned during her first year at Williston Northampton School.

CURRENTS Article A 25-year-old assistant director of alumni relations shares the lessons learned during her first year at Williston Northampton School.

The Apprentices
CURRENTS Article With the Student Philanthropy Officer pilot program in York University's annual giving office, students can graduate from phonathon calls to face-to-face asks of alumni.

Meet Brittany M. Weiss
CURRENTS Article Brittany M. Weiss is assistant director of alumni relations at Williston Northampton School, a coeducational boarding school for students in seventh grade through postgraduate year.

Small World, Big Ideas
CURRENTS Article n March 2015, Cunningham became CASE's 10th president. To mark that six-month milestone, CURRENTS met with Cunningham in her Washington, D.C., office to discuss a variety of timely topics, including the biggest challenge facing higher education and the best advice she's received about leadership.

Odds and Ends: Genius? No. Creativity? YES.
CURRENTS Article If you've been nominated for a MacArthur Fellowship, better known as a "genius grant," you'll never know it unless you win. And those who do win get the life-changing news from Cecilia Conrad, the program's vice president.

Outlook: Fully Committed
CURRENTS Article Good major gift officers leave for various reasons: poor leadership, lack of support, no options for promotion. But research shows they are willing to stay in less-than-ideal conditions when they're connected to the institution and feel their voice is heard.

Odds and Ends: Ambassador for the Final Frontier
CURRENTS Article To prepare for life in space, astronaut Randy Bresnik trains in environments generally unsuitable for human life, including weeklong missions in an underground cave complex and an undersea lab.

Sowing Skills, Reaping Content
CURRENTS Article A year after CASE’s 2014 Multimedia Workshop, participants reflect on their successes and lessons learned—from the intricacies of on-camera interviews to growing audiences.

New Leadership: Meet CASE’s 9th President
CURRENTS Article Sue Cunningham will take the helm at CASE on March 9, 2015.

Odds and Ends: Investigating Inventiveness
CURRENTS Article Walter Isaacson on technology—and why smartphones won’t make us zombies

Office Space: Want to Retain Your Fundraisers? Give Them Unlimited Time Off.
CURRENTS Article Taking time off is essential for maintaining one's energy, sanity, and creativity, particularly in a profession where devleopment officers are expected to bring their A-game to an 8 p.m. meeting with a donor and manage other events that are part of a nontraditional work schedule.

Office Space: Social Skills for Social Media
CURRENTS Article What and how we share online is an important life skill and an essential part of our personal and professional development—particularly as digital communication skills become a factor in how we're evaluated for jobs and other opportunities. Helping students, faculty, staff, and other constituents understand and develop their digital identities should be an institutional priority and a part of the educational experience. It should also be an important aspect of our work in advancement.

Big Marketers on Campus
CURRENTS Article A growing cadre of high-level marketing professionals is moving from the private sector to higher education. Many of these recent arrivals are assuming new cabinet-level positions, reflecting not only the growing acceptance of marketing in higher education but a rising emphasis on sophisticated market research as institutions strive to differentiate themselves in a tough environment—and at a time when the cost and the value of a college degree face unprecedented scrutiny.

Odds and Ends: Leading Lady
CURRENTS Article In this interview, Dawn Dekle, president of the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani, discusses the challenges of being the first woman to lead an Iraqi university.

The Student Becomes the Teacher
CURRENTS Article San Francisco University High School's 5-year-old teaching fellowship program is an alumni perk that allows graduates to explore a career as an independent school educator.

Odds and Ends: The Thin Line Between Life and a Life Sentence
CURRENTS Article Two men with the same name, Wes Moore, have followed two different paths in life. One is a Rhodes Scholar, an author, and an educational advocate. The other is serving a life sentence for murder. This Q-and-A with author Wes Moore reveals his insights about how education shaped his future.

Odds and Ends: At the Head of the Table
CURRENTS Article In this Q-and-A with Patty Stonesifer, the new CEO of Martha's Table in Washington, D.C., talks about how volunteerism was part of her upbringing and how she's bringing the business practices she honed at Microsoft and the Gates Foundation to fight poverty and hunger in the nation's capital.

Office Space: Steering a Multigenerational Team to Success
CURRENTS Article Leadership experts say today's workforce is more generationally diverse than ever before. Managers must balance changing workplace expectations with employees shaped by very different experiences and perspectives. This article discusses strategies for managing a multigenerational office.

Talking Points: Is Career Services Out of Service?
CURRENTS Article Colleges and universities need to do more than simply help seniors secure their first jobs after graduation; they should help students become employable for life. Everyone on campus must take part in creating a new ecosystem for this purpose.

Advancement’s Work Is Never Done
CURRENTS Article Worker burnout is one of the lingering side effects of the Great Recession as organizations continue do more with less. Advancement is no exception. Development consultant Karen Osborne shares work-life balancing strategies that vice presidents and foundation leaders use, or should use, to manage their time and minimize staff and volunteer fatigue.

Career Cliffhanger
CURRENTS Article Women hold a growing percentage of leadership positions in higher education but remain a confounding minority at the highest levels, according to recent studies.

A Different Kind of Homecoming
CURRENTS Article Alumni who become presidents of their alma maters often take their posts to preserve, improve, and expand the best aspects of their own undergraduate experiences for future generations. While memories of yesteryear shape only part of these presidents' executive goals and actions, elements of their undergraduate days help them lead their institutions more effectively, in advancement and other areas.

Office Space: Inside the Minds of Donors
CURRENTS Article A former adult educator turned development leader discusses how she adapts an online assessment instrument used in adult education to better understand her donors by discovering how they prefer to learn and process information. She also explains how she has used the tool—Assessing The Learning Strategies of AdultS—to gauge her own strengths and learning style as well as those of her staff, colleagues, and board members.

Talking Points: On Unequal Footing
CURRENTS Article While a degree improves earnings considerably for college graduates, women often do not reap the same financial rewards that men do from their degrees. A 2012 report from the American Association of University Women found that U.S. women working full time one year after college graduation were paid 82 cents for every dollar paid to men in their graduating class. The government, employers, and college women need to take action to bridge this gender gap.

In Her Shoes
CURRENTS Article Each March, Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart in New Jersey hosts Women We Admire Day. Students inhabit the personas of notable women past and present whose work has improved society.

Odd and Ends: Working with Words
CURRENTS Article This is a Q-and-A column with Will Shortz, crossword editor of The New York Times and NPR puzzle master.

Path to the Profession
CURRENTS Article Where does a development shop find good fundraisers? How do you hold on to them? Those questions and more are answered through an exploration of the latest talent management strategies.

CURRENTS Article This article explores the different ways that institutions large and small do student-alumni mentoring programs and the benefits that the students, alumni, institutions, and represented fields reap.

Office Space: Socialize With Savvy
CURRENTS Article This column gives advice on how to network productively at conferences and business-social events, including reminders about making a good first impression, tips on starting an engaging conversation, and the secret to gracefully ending a conversation that's gone on too long.

On the Road Again
CURRENTS Article Should you stay at a prospective donor's home? Should you accept the luxury upgrade when the rental car company offers it? Veteran fundraisers answer these questions and more while sharing their tips from getting to Donor A to Donor B with one's sanity intact.

Office Space: Stepping into a Leadership Role
CURRENTS Article Laurie Houck is new to her job as a vice president for development and alumni relations and reflects on what is most important in the first 100 days of a new job.

Communication Runs Through It
CURRENTS Article In this article, Tom S. Landrum, the senior vice president for external affairs at The University of Georgia, traces his career path in advancement from his first job in public relations more than 35 years ago to his appointment to the top advancement job in 2008 and discusses how his background in communications has affected his views on how development, alumni relations, and communications work together.

Office Space: How Heaven Has Changed
CURRENTS Article Jeffrey Lott, longtime editor of the Swarthmore College Bulletin, offers some parting advice, remembrances, and a few things he'll be glad to be rid of in this essay that looks back at his experiences over the past 20-plus years.

Managing Up
CURRENTS Article When institutional leaders lay out unrealistic fundraising expectations, it helps to educate them about the unique fundraising needs and approaches of your institution.

Odds and Ends: Breaking Through
CURRENTS Article In this interview with Vernice "FlyGirl" Armour, a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. military's first black female combat pilot, she discusses her experience with creating a culture of teamwork and mutual respect, the challenges of keeping people who work for large organizations engaged, and how higher education can help veterans as well as be helped by their experience.

Tied but Not Bound
CURRENTS Article Alumni leaders who have worked for their alma mater and another institution (or two) offer insight on both experiences.

Outlook: Renter or Owner?
CURRENTS Article Scott Nichols, senior vice president for development and alumni relations at Boston University, stresses the need for advancement professionals to be profession bound rather than institution bound. He argues that those in advancement must embrace change, seek education outside of their field, and hire staff members who bring different perspectives and skills to the team.

The Leadership Ladder
CURRENTS Article How will you acquire the skills necessary to be a leader in our profession or a leader on your current team? An alumni relations leader reflects on the experiences that prepared her for leadership.

Acto de equilibrio
CURRENTS Article Este artículo analiza los esfuerzos que colegios, universidad y escuelas independientes han hecho para ayudar a sus empleados a lograr un equilibrio entre su vida y el trabajo, y de cómo los esfuerzos se han expandido de tal forma que han incluido áreas de salud y bienestar dentro de las instituciones. También se analizan las dificultades que siguen existiendo en la implementación de programas, incluyendo el cambio de mentalidad para darse cuenta de que no llevar un equilibrio entre la vida y el trabajo afecta a todos. El artículo incluye los resultados del “2011 CASE Compensation Survey regarding benefits offered at respondents' institutions.”

Office Space: The Art of Working Effectively
CURRENTS Article In this article, author and advancement professional Rob Crawford reflects on his 10-year-plus effort to manage his time and his workload more effectively and productively. The valuable lessons he has gleaned from management books as well as his own experiments offer useful advice for those looking to improve their work habits.

Getting There
CURRENTS Article Women make up two-thirds of the advancement workforce but still lag men in leadership positions and pay. At the same time, the overrepresentation of women in advancement raises concerns about what the lack of gender diversity may mean for the profession.

Balancing Act
CURRENTS Article This article looks at the efforts that colleges, universities, and independent schools have made to help employees improve their work-life balance, how advancement employees see the issue in general as well as within their respective institutions, and how efforts have expanded to include areas such as health and wellness. It also examines what challenges remain in implementing programs, including changing the mindset to realize that work-life balance issues affect everyone. The article includes results from the 2011 CASE Compensation Survey regarding benefits offered at respondents' institutions.

Office Space: Mentoring Matters
CURRENTS Article In this article, Raina Lenney discusses the role a mentor can play in your career, what a person should consider when looking for a mentor, how to go about looking for a mentor, and how having mentors has been a benefit to her personally and professionally.

Outlook: New Directions
CURRENTS Article As education and advancement leaders are exhorted to be more open, they fret about letting go of control. What leaders need to accept to succeed in today's social media landscape is that they are no longer in control (and probably never really were to the degree they thought).

Office Space: Backing the Brand
CURRENTS Article This article discusses the Communicator Certificate Program at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. Run by the institution's university relations department, the program is a series of professional development workshops designed for full-time employees who are involved in managing and communicating the Rutgers brand. The program is also open to any full-time or part-time staff member who wants to learn more about the university. A recent assessment of the program found that it is achieving its goals, making for more coordinated and effective campus communication.

Office Space: Investing in Your Own
CURRENTS Article This article looks at an internal professional development program in the Division of Development and Alumni Relations at Bucknell University. Such a program can not only help retain staff, but also help ensure they have the skills your institution values. In addition, these initiatives empower staff to contribute to one another's professional development, encourage collaboration, and acknowledge the skills and expertise within your office.

Office Space: Pay It Forward
CURRENTS Article Few development offices offer internships. The author, himself an intern, makes the case for why they're beneficial to the institution and the profession and describes a few existing successful internship programs.

The Secret Talents of Fundraisers
CURRENTS Article A large but unknown number of fundraisers have backgrounds in the performing arts and have redirected their creativity and passion into development. The many artistically talented fundraisers interviewed in this article talk about how the skills they honed pursuing artistic endeavors inform their fundraising today.

An Inspiring Life's Work
CURRENTS Article One of the pioneers of educational fundraising, David Dunlop discusses ultimate gifts and the personal qualities of successful development officers in this interview. He shares similar insights annually as a faculty member of the Inspiring the Largest Gifts of a Lifetime conference.

Office Space: Everyone On Board
CURRENTS Article Creating a process for new employees to feel connected to the school can be integral to their success.

Destination: Alumni Relations
CURRENTS Article Historically, within advancement there has been a view that alumni relations is a good starting point—a place to cut your teeth before you move on to the “real” work of development or communications. Of course, that’s not true, either now or in the past. Increasingly today, with the growing and sophisticated skill set alumni professionals need to get the job done, alumni relations has become a destination career rather than a stop along the way.

Screen Tests
CURRENTS Article Conferences and colleagues can provide some guidance, but sometimes it’s best to turn to that age-old source of truth and wisdom—television. Alumni professionals might be surprised at the lessons they can learn from reality television and game shows.

Career Path: Acting Your Age
CURRENTS Article A young fundraiser discusses what life is like as a development professional. Once you know the challenges a young person faces, perhaps you can encourage your own employees.

Odds and Ends: Father Time
CURRENTS Article The author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People discusses time management, leadership, and leaving a legacy.

Career Path: The Mommy Track
CURRENTS Article A director of university relations finds a better fit at her institution when the birth of her second child makes her want to slow the pace a bit.

Office Space: A-Maze-ing Grace
CURRENTS Article Although team-building activities might not be for everyone, they can cement relationships across advancement in new ways.

Career Path: Breaking With the Law
CURRENTS Article After working as a lawyer, this author finds that law and development have a lot in common. He examines how a law degree can help while working in advancement.

Closing Remarks: Mind the (Gender) Gap
CURRENTS Article This column looks at the persistent gender gap in salary and compensation within the advancement field and suggests what might be done to correct it.

Time to Rethink Alumni Leadership?
CURRENTS Article How institutions choose their alumni leaders is changing, and that's probably for the best.

Talent Sprouts
CURRENTS Article Development offices across the world are in need of more suitable candidates. Students are a convenient resource just waiting to be tapped.

A Growing Field
CURRENTS Article As demand increases for experienced advancement professionals, recruiters in the UK have looked to North America to fill the gap. Some have made a successful transition overseas; others have not.

Career Path: Admiring the 'View
CURRENTS Article Interviewing for a job is an inevitable part of the professional world. However, what happens when the interview doesn't land a job? You may be surprised to find that it can still lead to positive results.

Advance Work: Multifaceted Field
CURRENTS Article A question on the CASE 2007 Salary Survey asked respondents to list the certificates and advanced degrees they have earned. The results were very varied.

Career Path: History Lesson
CURRENTS Article A fundraiser has found that her background in the university archives has helped her relate to donors and prospects. She recommends that all development officers forge a relationship with the campus archivist.

Career Path: In My Life
CURRENTS Article An alumni relations director talks about the similarities between student recruitment and alumni relations. Both disciplines are frequently misunderstood, and the skills required to do both well are similar.

Career Path: The Perfect Fit
CURRENTS Article Sometimes a person outside of the field can make the best leader. That's what happened when a marketing professional became the head of the foundation of a large community college system.

Career Path: On the Other Side
CURRENTS Article No matter the size of the organization, development work is at its core the same. It's a matter of figuring out how to work with what you have.

Career Path: The Unexpected Perfect Job
CURRENTS Article A development writer has realized that what he thought would be a stop-gap job until he landed in a communications position is in fact a perfect fit for his skills and aspirations.

Career Path: Stay and Deliver
CURRENTS Article Contrary to current trends, this development professional has stayed at his institution for more than 20 years.

Slice of Life
CURRENTS Article The author of this article describes how she often finds herself somewhat overwhelmed with options that can help her stay current and better serve her institution--listservs, blogs, online publications, print magazines, classes, conferences, and more. And she is not alone. In this article, she describes the best ways for PR people to stay on top of technology-related tools in an ever-changing field. She and other communicators describe what the essentials are to read, review, and attend when time--and money--is limited.

Work in Progress: Get on Top of Your Work Stress
CURRENTS Article Work stress builds, and before you know it you're experiencing health problems and job burnout. The good news is that you don't have to spend hours in the gym. The article describes stretches you can do at your desk in a few minutes and reap the benefits.

Career Path: Familiar Places
CURRENTS Article A former alumni association executive director was promoted to the ranks of advancement leadership. While the scope of the current work is broader, the basic job functions are similar to her job in alumni relations.

Career Path: Going Academic
CURRENTS Article A longtime marketing and PR professional whose career at Procter and Gamble lasted more than 25 years reflects on her current job as a director of communications at an independent school.

Career Path: Extracurricular Experience
CURRENTS Article A professional fundraiser learns a lot about her job and how to do it better by volunteering in her community.

Work in Progress: Passing Up a Promotion
CURRENTS Article Turning down an opportunity to move up in the organization doesn't have to end your career. How you say no is crucial. This article has suggestions for making the decision and delivering it to your boss. You can still contribute, still grow.

Career Path: A Different World
CURRENTS Article After an advancement career in the United States, the author took a development job at an independent school in Paris and finds that the U.S. advancement model is not so easily exported.

Manager's Portfolio: Making a Management Transition
CURRENTS Article Even when you have management experience, you face new staff, a new campus culture, and new challenges when you move to a different institution. This article by an advancement professional in that situation shares his plan and offers some practical tips.

Career Path: A Shift in Perspective
CURRENTS Article An advancment professional with experience in both alumni relations and development thinks the two offices can work together much more effectively than they frequently do.

Career Path: Perception Versus Reality
CURRENTS Article The author of this column sees a lot of people come to higher education fundraising from other careers. Frequently they initially have mistaken ideas of what the job will be like.

Advance Work: Wing Tips
CURRENTS Article Advancement officers often rely on planes, trains, and automobiles to get the job done. This piece offers some travel tips from four of the profession’s biggest road warriors.

Manager's Portfolio: Attract Success
CURRENTS Article You might be able to achieve your goals more easily when you don't focus exclusively on your daily agenda. Be open and respond to serendipitous events. They could lead you to success.

Career Path: Your Next Campaign: You
CURRENTS Article Development professionals already know how to conduct a thorough job search--even if they don't know they know. This article explains how fund raising is similar to looking for a new job and provides tips on how to find the perfect new place of employment.

Career Path: Step by Step
CURRENTS Article Angela Davis is an African American woman and a new advancement professional at Purdue University. How did she end up in a profession that is more than 90 percent Caucasian?

Advance Work: Better to Give Than Receive
CURRENTS Article Avoid international gift-giving gaffes with these tips from Lilya Wagner of Counterpart International.

Career Path: Follow and Leader
CURRENTS Article The author took a sabbatical to raise money for a project close to her heart and learned some important lessons about how to be a good manager.

Manager's Portfolio: Secrets to Powerful Presentations
CURRENTS Article In this article, an experienced presenter gives tips for making your presentations memorable and even moving. Such talks start with practice, are delivered with passion, and end with the audience taking away a call to action.

Career Path: Exiting Center Stage
CURRENTS Article How do you make the transition from volunteer fund raiser and school trustee to director of the new advancement department that supervises the development department you used to support? How do you introduce ways to improve the department? The answer, I have found, is cautiously, delicately, constructively, and, most of all, respectfully.

Manager's Portfolio: Leading by Questioning and Listening
CURRENTS Article Strategic questions can uncover need-to-know information for team motivation and performance

Advance Work: The Networkers' Network
CURRENTS Article Development professionals spend their workdays networking and making connections with people for the advancement of their organizations. In New York City they can do the same activities after work--but for the advancement of their careers. The Young Development Professionals of New York City has more than 75 members from some 20 institutions in the metropolitan area and beyond.

Career Path: Home Again
CURRENTS Article The writer of this article appreciates her work in higher education advancement much more after experiencing the difficulties of fund raising for a social services nonprofit.

Manager's Portfolio: First Close the Door
CURRENTS Article E-mail overload has become all too common. The hundreds of e-mail messages in your inbox aren't really messages anymore--they're broken promises, missed deadlines, and unfinished work. This article provides tips on how to establish routines that ensure you stay on top of things.

Road Warriors
CURRENTS Article This article about GPS (geographic positioning systems)is for advancement professionals who travel to meet with prospects and donors. GPS technology makes travel easier by creating maps with the shortest driving route, and it locates hotels, restaurants, and other travel-related locations. Advancement travelers also can use GPS to facilitate management of their database of names and addresses. Some systems can produce maps with pinpoints where donors or prospects live, with access through the pinpoint to relevant underlying data on those people. The author discusses how to use the technology and reviews several products on the market.

Career Path: Give Piece a Chance
CURRENTS Article Regardless of how you came to the advancement profession, career advancement requires identifying the skills you have and looking for opportunities to acquire the skills you need. Whether it's seeking more responsibilities in your current job, getting training, or finding a new position that will offer growth opportunities, piece by piece your career picture will take shape.

Manager's Portfolio: Defeating "Overwhelm"
CURRENTS Article Everyone seems to be suffering from a daily feeling of being overwhelmed. We feel overwhelmed when we do too much, too fast. This article provides tips on how to say “no” and keep firm boundaries because none of us are superman or superwoman.

Mind Over Manners
CURRENTS Article This article, the second in a two-part series on etiquette, addresses the specifics of dining in settings that include a formal dinner, a banquet, and in a small group at a restaurant or home as well as the proper way to walk down the street, hold open a door, or enter and exit a taxicab.

Career Path: New Times Two
CURRENTS Article Both new to education advancement and creating a new position in the University of Alaska system, a corporate and foundation relations officer describes the unusual career path that brought her to this point and the challenges she faces in getting herself and her office established.

Manager's Portfolio: Meetings Take a Beating
CURRENTS Article Many organizations or departments meet out of habit, which can be a waste of everyone's time. This article addresses how managers can make their meetings more meaningful in less time--or how to avoid them altogether.

Sense and Sensibility
CURRENTS Article Advancement officers constantly must be aware of what they do and say because they represent something bigger than themselves: their institutions. This article is the first in a two-part series designed to help advancement officers use proper etiquette when interacting with donors, alumni, faculty and staff colleagues, and other constituents. Part one documents the history of etiquette and provides a how-to guide for handling many common business and social situations. Part two, to be published in October, will address good table manners and other courtesies.

Career Path: The Road Taken
CURRENTS Article Susan Thurston Kern joined the staff of Illinois State University in 1974, beginning a 31-year career that culminated in a seven-year tenure as vice president for university advancement and ended with her retirement in July 2005. In this column, Kern reflects on her years in advancement--a profession she calls her “true calling”--and the four words that make success possible: learning, linking, leveraging, and loving.

Career Path: Open Mouth, Insert Foot
CURRENTS Article Advancement work is hard enough without having to sidestep the landmines your CEO puts in your path through his or her inappropriate words or actions. As columnist Betty H. Meehan rightly (and wryly) observes, learning how to prevent such situations not only makes advancement professionals more successful, it also keeps them sane. This column suggests strategies for making such success possible.

Manager's Portfolio: On the Ball
CURRENTS Article Elementary school development offices face more challenges every year. How can these small shops handle ever-increasing expectations during a time of belt tightening and greater demands for results? Managers should begin by setting priorities, goals, and objectives as well as the strategies for achieving them. Careful measurement and evaluation will ensure that managers focus on vital fund-raising activities and stay on track toward completion.

Career Path: Feel the Burnout
CURRENTS Article No employee is immune to burnout, an occupational hazard that can threaten the mental and physical health of employees at every level, within every advancement office, and at every type of institution. This column, an adaptation of Audiovision’s “Easy 1” information guide, “Burnout & Job-stress,” identifies the conditions that cause burnout--among them work overload and unfair treatment--and suggests simple strategies workers can employ to minimize their job stress and prevent burnout.

Managers Portfolio: I'm All Ears
CURRENTS Article Listening leadership means to guide yourself and others to positive results by enhanced sensing, interpreting, evaluating, storing, and responding to messages. Unfortunately, great listening is a rare management skill. To build a solid foundation for listening success, advancement managers should understand that listening is a primary communication activity; it’s an innate, learned, and improvable behavior; and that responsible and active listeners are productive listeners. Further, listening leaders constantly strive to improve their skills.

Career Path: Branded for Life
CURRENTS Article It's important to pay attention to--and to shape, as best you can--others' perceptions of your reputation, character, and personality in the same way companies manage their products' identities. This column discusses why managing your personal brand is so important and offers tips to advancement officers who want to build their own brands.

Career Path: You, Magnified
CURRENTS Article Annual performance reviews can be daunting, but employees can minimize their fears by knowing what to expect. The best way to prepare for such evaluations, says Smith College's Amy Holich, is to take stock of one’s accomplishments and failures prior to meeting with management and to plan accordingly for the year ahead. This column describes the self-assessment process Holich follows each year as she tracks and evaluates her own professional progress.

Career Path: Up and In
CURRENTS Article Employees routinely think they are worth more than the salaries they earn, but they don’t necessarily deserve the raises to which they think they are entitled. This column explores the strategies one should employ when trying to negotiate a raise and suggests what to do if the answer is no.

Career Path: Top Down
CURRENTS Article Is it possible for employees to make their bosses happy, advance their own careers, and still look forward to coming to work every day? Warwick--a former university relations officer at Loyola Marymount University, now senior counsel for Phillips & Associates--says it is, if you’re prepared to manage up. This column explains the ins and outs of managing your manager and discusses what to do if managing up isn’t an option.

A Makeover Story
CURRENTS Article In this article, the second of a pair about strategic communications, the author candidly describes the transformation of her career as a communications professional. She starts by recounting the entry of the word “strategic” into the higher education lexicon and then chronicles how embracing the word has shaped her career.

Career Path: One for All and All for One
CURRENTS Article Ask professionals in almost any industry, and many will say they couldn’t have gotten where they are without the steadying hand and experienced wisdom of a mentor. This column explores the power of the mentor-protégé relationship and how mentoring changes us--both personally and professionally.

Career Path: Growing Pains
CURRENTS Article In 2001, Bobbi Burns decided she wanted to pursue a career in development. Looking for on-the-job experience, Burns accepted a part-time development internship in Michigan State University’s College of Engineering. Upon graduation in May 2004, Burns leveraged her internship into a paid position as part of MSU’s two-year Development Associate Program. This column documents her transition from an intern learning the ropes of development into a professional fund raiser tasked with building relationships with young alumni.

AdvanceWork: New Recruits
CURRENTS Article Students can’t pursue a degree in advancement, so how can campuses recruit them to the profession? Practitioners suggest institutions develop formal advancement internship programs or hire student workers. A third option is CASE’s Association of Student Advancement Programs, which provides networking and leadership development opportunities to promote student involvement in education advancement.

Career Path: Partners in Time
CURRENTS Article This column examines life in a dual-CAO household--the challenges, the benefits, and the strategies working parents in advancement must employ to maintain a work-life balance. The author reflects on his relationship with his wife, also a chief advancement officer, and explains how they have leveraged their life partnership into a business partnership. He also discusses some of the challenges they have faced and how they keep their family life front and center.

Career Path: Time Is on Your Side
CURRENTS Article Can flexible scheduling work in an advancement office? The author, now a senior development officer for Denison University, has arranged for modified work schedules--full-time, part-time, and telecommuting--at two different institutions. She explains how she made the case each time and reflects on her experiences.

Career Path: The More You Know
CURRENTS Article What should advancement professionals at all levels and in all disciplines find out in a job interview before accepting the position for which they are interviewing? The author draws on her own experience jumping from a small, private school on the East Coast to a large public school on the West Coast (and back again) to explain why it’s important for job seekers to approach the interview as both a showcase for proving how talented they are and a comprehensive fact-finding mission. The alternative, Holthouser writes, is learning too late that the job--and the institution--are a poor match.

Career Path: Assessing the Assessments
CURRENTS Article Will knowing that you are an ENTP, an Idealist, or a Rock Star really affect your job or career search? Jennifer Rodgers, a certified administrator of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, examines the usefulness of personality tests in assessing the match between personality type and advancement position. She argues that the tests' greatest value lies in the awareness they generate--"awareness of what makes you happy and productive … and of when the label fits or is best left behind." Tests examined include the MBTI; the Keirsey Temperament Sorter; Right Job, Wrong Job; the Strong Interest Inventory; and the Ultimate Personality Test.

AdvanceWork: Time Management or Time Wasted
CURRENTS Article Advancement officers who can never find enough hours in the day might want to examine their time management practices. "First Things First" author Stephen Covey proposes a system of four quadrants for dividing work tasks according to their urgency and importance that can help workers identify if they're driven by crises or bogged down by the mundane.

Manager's Portfolio: Hat Tricks
CURRENTS Article Successful chief advancement officers must play numerous campus roles--everything from motivator and manager to pace-setter and major gifts officer. The article identifies the seven characteristics these top professionals need to manage institution CEOs, board members, staff members across campus, and the internal advancement team.

Career Path: Right Profession, Wrong Discipline?
CURRENTS Article Advancement professionals who are dissatisfied with their work and considering a different career should give advancement another look, says the author. Davis argues that "chucking" years of practical experience and a Rolodex full of valued contacts can be terrifying--and is not necessarily the right move.

Overarching Concerns
CURRENTS Article Just as the nature of higher education is changing, so too is the campus presidency. As advancement officers increasingly work closely with campus CEOs, they should be well informed about the demands and new challenges they face.

Career Path: Memoirs of a Moonlighter
CURRENTS Article In spring 2002, Tom Stamp, director of public affairs at Kenyon College, was "itching for a change." The institution had been struggling to fill the vacant director of development position, so Stamp volunteered to step in as acting director for one year. This column documents Stamp’s 18-month experience in the role--the challenges, the successes and failures, and the lessons learned.

Manager's Portfolio: Up Where We Belong
CURRENTS Article Leadership with personality, panache, and--most important--confidence sets the tone for the campus workplace. Determine your management style with a revealing look at the characteristics of insecure bosses and top-flight professionals.

Career Path: The Tortoise and the Hare
CURRENTS Article Every professional will change jobs countless times in his or her career, but making the most of those changes requires careful planning. The author, a career services counselor, suggests that every professional can build a path to career success by developing a strategic plan, setting goals, embracing change, fostering professional connections, diversifying career goals, seeking the advice of trusted colleagues, building transferable skills, leveraging opportunities, and thinking creatively.

Portrait of a Profession
CURRENTS Article How has the entertainment industry characterized the advancement profession? Most film and television portrayals of development professionals rate somewhere between crass caricatures of greedy administrators and more nuanced depictions that poke holes in their integrity. Media portrayals of alumni relations and campus communications officers, meanwhile, are much harder to find. This article highlights some of the films and television programs that have contributed to the public's misperceptions of the advancement profession and asks advancement officers to weigh in on how such depictions impact their own work.

Career Path: When the Clock Winds Down
CURRENTS Article Every professional has a career clock that tells him or her when it is time to move on to the next challenge. It is important to formulate and follow a long-term career plan, refining it where necessary. Understanding career goals and objectives, inventorying skills and experiences, and researching available opportunities are just some of the ways to ensure that your next position is the right one.

Career Path: A Date with Success
CURRENTS Article Busy advancement professionals often neglect professional development activities in favor of more "important" responsibilities. Here are 12 ideas to help even the most overtasked advancement officers squeeze professional development into their daily "to-do" lists.

Manager's Portfolio: Two Months to Think
CURRENTS Article A college vice president describes his two-month administrative leave, which contributed to significant changes in Bates College's alumni relations efforts.

Closing Remarks: Lead Story
CURRENTS Article Campus leaders are the chief storytellers of their institutions. Telling stories—communicating core messages—helps them build trust, maintain integrity, model productive behavior, and set a tone for their campuses. To do so, they must ensure they’re heard amid the din of other communications, practice self-disclosure so others will be open with them, and maintain balance in their roles so their stories and messages convey a broad range of perspectives.

Career Path: Making the Switch
CURRENTS Article Today's advancement professionals should not feel restricted to working in one discipline. Many, in fact, jump from development to alumni relations or communications (or vice versa) with relative ease. The key to success is conducting an honest self-assessment of needs and desires before making the switch.

Manager's Portfolio: My Own Worst Nightmare
CURRENTS Article A college foundation executive concludes that mentoring is a boss's most important responsibility after reflecting on her early work experiences and realizing she resembles a former supervisor who didn't give credence to staff members' ideas or value their enthusiasm.

Career Path: Lessons on Longevity
CURRENTS Article After 38 years in top-level jobs in the business office and in advancement at Anderson University, Ron Moore looks back on his career and offers five lessons in how staying put can improve fund-raising results. This Career Path column is of particular interest to chief advancement officers and development managers, but also managers of advancement services, alumni relations, and communications.

Career Path: Dreamy or Dreary?
CURRENTS Article Advancement officers who may want to switch to consulting should first consider a number of factors, including whether they have marketable experience, a strong network, and realistic salary expectations. They also have to take into account the state of the economy and whether they’re temperamentally suited to an entrepreneurial career. This Career Path column is of interest to fund-raising, communications, advancement services, and alumni officers.

Closing Remarks: Looking for Leaders
CURRENTS Article Even though responsibility for creating an ethical advancement program starts at the top, too many senior leaders are silent about the importance of doing the right thing. This Closing Remarks column spells out basic principles to raise standards and create ethical organizations. The article is of interest to chief advancement officers as well as managers of alumni relations, development, marketing and communications, and advancement services.

AdvanceWork: Sparks and Matches
CURRENTS Article Three married couples who work in advancement tell how they how they met at CASE conferences and juggle two careers.

Career Path: Out of the Shadows
CURRENTS Article Annual giving jobs are no longer mere stepping stones to major gift positions. Instead, annual fund professionals are gaining new respect for their skills with statistics, data mining, market research, customer and volunteer relations, and more. This Career Path column is of interest to annual giving professionals, development managers, and major gift officers.

Career Path: Counter Measures
CURRENTS Article More nonprofits are making counteroffers to avoid losing good workers who are considering new jobs. For advancement officers receiving counteroffers, this article includes strategies for weighing the pros and cons, deciding expeditiously, and accepting or declining counteroffers diplomatically. This Career Path column is of interest to advancement managers and job hunters.

AdvanceWork: Drawing from Experience
CURRENTS Article In this AdvanceWork Q&A, cartoonist and nonprofit staffer Miriam Engelberg shares her experiences that provided inspiration for her comic book, They Came From Planet 501c3.

Closing Remarks: Advancement's Siren Song
CURRENTS Article In this Closing Remarks column, a university editor and publications manager shares her feelings that, although advancement professionals are often underpaid, they are rewarded by a deep sense that what they are doing is important and intrinsically worthwhile. Further, the profession is great fun—especially for editors.

Manager's Portfolio: Five Budget-Busting Myths
CURRENTS Article Your job as a manager is to learn how to negotiate what you need so your programs and staff members can keep up the good work—even in tough times like these. There are five myths you need to overcome if you want to be one of the people who know where the money is.

An Advancement Odyssey
CURRENTS Article In this career perspectives essay, Sobel, director of development for the Rutgers University Graduate School of Education, shares his 15-year journey through various positions in communications, development, and alumni relations working for the government, public and private universities, and a top accounting firm.

Continuing and Graduate Education for Advancement
CURRENTS Article The primary challenge in compiling a list of education opportunities for advancement officers is that there is no academic field of "advancement."

Manager's Portfolio: Give Yourself a Checkup
CURRENTS Article Regular self-assessment can be productive for both managers and employees. Louden lists five effective ways for individuals at any level to evaluate their own work.

Turning Over A New Leaf
CURRENTS Article Many campus communications professionals worked in the mass media before taking their current positions in academe. One such refugee shares her reflections on fleeing the fourth estate to become a university magazine editor.

Postcards from the Edge
CURRENTS Article This article features profiles of five professionals who have left advancements to follow their heads and hearts into new careers. They share their answers to this question: Is there life after the vice presidency?

Advancing as an Advancement Officer
CURRENTS Article Nearly 100 U.S. colleges and universities offer graduate programs with a concentration in nonprofit management. Other advancement-oriented programs stem from higher education administration, public administration, or business administration fields. This article includes a list of graduate and certificate programs to help you take the next step along your career path.

Manager's Portfolio: Telling Tales In School
CURRENTS Article Storytelling is a powerful method of communication. Because many managers haven’t harnessed storytelling for its positive purposes, it has become primarily a way for employees to vent their unhappiness and cynicism. But when managers make storytelling a positive force in a work culture, they can have a tremendous impact on their institutions.

Jack of All Trades
CURRENTS Article The success of your transition will rest on your ability to educate yourself and others about what marketing is and how it can work with public relations to benefit your institution. With education and persistence, people from traditional PR backgrounds can be well-positioned to lead the marketing discussion.

A Surprisingly Good Fit
CURRENTS Article Changes in the characteristics of corporate leadership, as well as in management styles in higher education, have wrought a different path to higher education leadership than formerly. Search committees now look for many of the skills a chief advancement officer possesses; seeking the campus presidency may now be a logical next step in a CAO’s career. But beware of the cultural obstacles that can lie in wait.

It's a Matter of Trust
CURRENTS Article The working relationship between the president and the chief advancement officer is one of the closest on campus. A CEO and CAO must develop together a shared, behind-the-scenes perspective to enjoy each other's company and the tasks they undertake together. The keys to a successful working relationship are respect, trust, and a common understanding.

Closing Remarks: Rung Out
CURRENTS Article A former development officer reflects on her hesitation to move up in advancement

AdvanceWork: Leadership Lessons
CURRENTS Article More guiding principles for advancement officers

Tech Support: Become a Portable Powerhouse
CURRENTS Article When advancement officers travel for work, they need to remain connected and productive. The article provides seven steps for building an effective laptop computer system.

AdvanceWork: Leadership Lessons
CURRENTS Article What are the secrets of your success as an advancement leader?

Manager's Portfolio: A Sterling Reputation
CURRENTS Article A good or bad reputation among colleagues can make or break a career in advancement. Image reflects reality, so important steps are building strong one-on-one relationships with coworkers at all levels and engaging in campus life, as well as making the most of chances to connect with the president, trustees, and other key figures.

AdvanceWork: Essential Elements of Leadership
CURRENTS Article Sage advice for chief advancement officers

AdvanceWork: Strong Starts
CURRENTS Article You've heard it all before: Stand up straight, give a firm handshake, dress professionally, and look people in the eye — when culturally appropriate, of course.

Closing Remarks: Leading the Way
CURRENTS Article The Internet is rapidly becoming a dominant medium, and -- as with past revolutions in mass communication -- leaders must develop a corresponding new set of social and organizational skills. These include: 1) an intuitive understanding of the new economy; 2) an ability to manage team processes rather than implement hierarchies; 3) skill in managing relationships; 4) a passion for their product or service; 5) marketing expertise; 6) comfort with technology; 7) a respect for failure.

Closing Remarks: Married to the Job
CURRENTS Article Collins reflects on the ups and downs of being married to another advancement officer.

AdvanceWork: Lead the Follower
CURRENTS Article One mark of a great leader is a willingness to help his or her staffers become exceptional followers, says consultant Robert A. Sevier of Stamats Communications.

Manager's Portfolio: Creating a Leader Culture
CURRENTS Article Beck describes a nonprofit management model suited to volunteer-powered groups such as alumni associations and foundation boards. She explains how organizations can create a collaborative culture based on four factors: participation, communication, direction, and recognition. Organizations can use the model in exercises to analyze the role of leadership and examine institutional culture.

AdvanceWork: On the Road Again?
CURRENTS Article Follow these tips from Working Woman magazine to help contain your lodging expenses.

AdvanceWork: Road Rules
CURRENTS Article An alumni affairs director shares travel tips gained during his first 10 months on the job.

Manager's Portfolio: The Leadership Paradox
CURRENTS Article Institutions want great leaders, but for leaders to be successful, their staff members must be good followers. Sevier lists four key responsibilities of exceptional followers: 1) Speak up when you feel the leader is making a mistake, but do so privately and professionally. 2) Support the leader's final decision. 3) Encourage the leader. 4) Defend the leader, and avoid engaging in public criticism.

Closing Remarks: Feng Shui at Work
CURRENTS Article A former CASE board member tells how rearranging her office helped her reassess her professional goals.

Workshop: New Kid On the Block?
CURRENTS Article The author offers valuable tips for first-time development officers. Visiting recent donors, reviewing your institution’s files on major gift donors, and making the easy ask first are just a few of the pointers offered.

In Advance: Is Your Job on the Line?
CURRENTS Article Seven signs for CDOs that it's time for a change.

In Advance: Straight to the Source
CURRENTS Article Former Indiana State University vice president for university advancement Ed Pease describes his move to the U.S. House of Representatives, and how his advancement experience helps in his new role as a legislator.

In Advance: Hail to the Chief
CURRENTS Article The book, "The Advancement President and the Academy" by Mary Kay Murphy is reviewed.

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