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Our team of experts will share their experiences, tips and viewpoints in all areas of higher education consulting, leadership, and fundraising. We're a team of tenured individuals who have made it their life’s work to help solve some of the issues surrounding community colleges today. Some of our topics include:

  • How to connect and establish relationships with your alumni
  • Ways to create impact with all generations of people
  • How to raise more on a tight budget
  • How to properly manage your reputation online
  • Ways to prepare for a feasibility study
  • And more!
Is Your Community College Too Transparent Rich Gross Solutions

Could your community college be too transparent?

In a world where transparency and disclosure are lauded as the answer to creating an informed citizenry, a past New York Times article…
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When was napping a crime?

Why are we continuing to be confronted with stories revealing the disturbing reality that certain people, owing to a particular aspect of their…
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Dodging-Coconuts-Rich-Gross-Solutions

Why Dodging Coconuts?

The story was hidden away in the bigger story of the typhoon that struck the Philippines. A gentleman and his family owned a…
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women making a donation online

How To Increase Your Fiscal Year-End Fundraising

Fundraising is an integral part of nonprofit operations, and developing a solid fundraising strategy is crucial for success. According to the Blackbaud Institute's 2017 report,…
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community college students

Turning Students into Donors

Have you ever wondered what separates schools with seemingly inelastic enrollment numbers, from those schools that struggle to keep student numbers trending upward?…
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Computer screen of grant application

10 Grant Writing Tips for Higher Education

If you are writing a grant, you probably already know that the business of getting funding is quite competitive. By observing the following…
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College students with donate art

The Psychology of Charity: Top Five Reasons Donors Give

Human psychology is the key to understanding the concept of donating, and it's also the secret to developing the persuasive prowess that promotes…
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Higher Education LinkedIn Screen

3 Quick Daily LinkedIn To-Do List for Higher Ed Professionals

With social media coming increasingly to the forefront, LinkedIn is one network that higher education professionals should definitely be paying attention to. Not…
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What We Learn from United Airlines?

The recent incident at United Airlines of dragging a paying “bumped” customer off an airliner provides learning lessons for any organization that operates…
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3 Non-Financial Ways Young Alumni Give Back

Engaging young alumni is changing as the use of technology and the behaviors of each class differs. Understanding how to engage young alumni…
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The Top 5 Higher Education Fundraising Trends for 2017

The Top 5 Higher Education Fundraising Trends for 2017

What possibilities could you achieve if you knew the secret to successful higher education fundraising trends in 2017?
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What's the plan for your community college in 2017?

Emerging Campaign Initiatives You Should Consider in 2017

As we start the new semester, it’s time to look ahead to what 2017 may have in store for community college development efforts.…
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If All Roads Were Straight Why Would We Need a Steering Wheel?

There is a TV commercial that you’ve probably watched many times. It’s from an auto insurance company that presents strange accident scenarios and…
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You Can Lead Them to Water…

Sometimes the best laid plans go – not as planned. Having recently completed an extensive feasibility study with a large group of interviewees…
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The Joys and Sorrows of In-Kind Donations

I recently was interviewed by a reporter from the Chronicle of Higher Education who was interested in learning about the challenges of in-kind…
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The Election is Over – Where are the Jobs?

The most fundamental cause of the loss of manufacturing jobs is not companies abandoning US manufacturing; rather it’s the growth of technology.
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Stop Blaming the Newspaper

Stop Blaming the Newspaper

A recent above the fold front page story featured a newly appointed board chair of a local school board who is currently in…
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engage-with-each-other

Engage Them (Or You May Have to Catch Them)

We’ve run across a couple of instances lately where a college development office or college leadership team has expressed frustration with either their…
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Whats-Your-Organizational-Grant-Strategy-Compete-or-Collaborate

What’s Your Organizational Grant Strategy: Compete or Collaborate?

Did you hear the one about the college whose endowment pockets were so deep that its students were just a sideline and not…
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Where-should-you-look-for-planned-gift-donors

Where should you look for planned gift donors?

Where should you look for planned gift donors? People with money, you say. That’s a good start, but you’ll need to know more…
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How to Find Higher Education Donors in Unusual Places

Find Higher Education Donors in the Most Unusual Places

Sometimes on the way to making the ask of the usual suspects, someone comes out of nowhere with a donation to your college.…
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How Can Your Team Prepare for the Unknown

Why Preparing for the Unknown is Crucial to Your Higher Education Reputation

Mary was the subject of a caustic media blitz. As President of her college, she was a well-known and acknowledged leader in the…
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The Key to a Great Foundation Board

The Key to a Great Foundation Board

Developing a successful board of directors is no small task. In my experience, many advancement officers find themselves devoting a great deal of…
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Bad Press Can be Good for Donor Relationships

Bad press is never fun and it is always a distraction. Despite the many challenges it presents, however, bad press creates a great…
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To Market, again? Higher Education Consulting

To Market, to Market – again?

Just released from the "Trends Report 2016" produced by the Chronicle of Higher Education are 10 key higher-education trends for college leaders. Among…
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Who's on Your Shoulder?

Who’s on Your Shoulder?

Pop culture advertising has given us phrases that have stood the test of time: “Where’s the beef”? “A Little Dab Will Do You,”…
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How-Often-Should-a-College-go-to-Campaign

How Often Should a College go to Campaign?

We often recommend that a community college engage in a campaign about every five years. If it’s been that long since your last…
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3-Website-Fails-To-Avoid-In-Higher-Education

3 Higher Education Website Fails You Need to Avoid

  Web design is more than just color and format, it's about the user-experience and traffic generation to every page of your site.…
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Major Gift Campaigns Urgency Importance Community College

Major Gifts: Urgent vs. Important

Here are two things you already know: Stewarding a meaningful major gift relationship is not a process that should be rushed. Many community…
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Major Gift Opportunities Community College

4 Planned Giving Opportunities You May Have Overlooked

Your organization doesn’t have to be a major museum, hospital or university to have a planned giving program. And a development officer doesn’t…
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How You Can Become Grant Ready

How You Can Become Grant Ready

It’s here again—income tax season. Even if we pay accountants to attend to all the details associated with completing tax forms, computing deductions,…
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Community College Consultant - Rich Gross Solutions

7 Questions Prospective Employees Ask

In this era of workplace change, what is most important to a prospective employee? You might say salary and title but you would…
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Community-College-New-Years-Resolutions-Rich-Gross

5 New Year’s Resolutions Your Advancement Office Should Be Doing

We all know how hard it is to get back to work after spending time off for the holidays. Sometimes it helps to…
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Face to Face Relationship Building Community College Fundraising

Face-to Face Cultivation

Are you new to major gifts fundraising? If you are, you’re probably concerned about establishing person-to-person relationships. How do you get to know…
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Feasibility Studies Data

Waltz or Tango? Dancing After Good Data

Can’t say that I am an expert but I do have a lot of experience conducting interviews for feasibility studies at colleges, museums…
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Student Protests at Community College

How is Your Community College Responding to Recent Student Protests?

Student protests of racial discrimination from the University of Missouri to the venerable Ivy League strongholds, Yale and Princeton, have yielded dramatic results.…
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Higher education Recession prevention

3 Ways You Can Survive the Next Recession

First of all a confession – I’m not an economist. But I’ve been around long enough to predict with certainty that recessions and…
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Community Colleges should start a digital newsletter

3 Reasons Your College Should Publish a Digital Newsletter

Chances are your foundation and/or alumni office already publishes a printed newspaper on a regular basis. Now that you’ve done the hard part…
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Community College Campaign

Community College Campaigns: The Good, Bad and Ugly

This morning I had the honor of partnering with Shannon Hair, VP of Advancement at Danville Community College in Virginia, to present at…
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Why Donate to Community College

Why Should Donors Choose Your College or Nonprofit Organization?

Whether you’re a university, a community college or an arts organization, your fundraising success will depend upon making a compelling case for support.…
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Community College Fundraising

Yogi-isms for Fundraising Professionals

Yogi Berra made significant contributions to baseball, humor and fundraising. Wait, fundraising? Yes, fundraising. Whether he knew it or not, Yogi gave us…
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Using Ice Skating and LinkedIn to Enhance Alumni Relationships

Have you ever noticed that people don’t need to be told where to go once they are on the ice at a public…
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How a Blog Can Inspire College Faculty Part 2

How a Blog Can Inspire Your College’s Faculty and Staff {Part 2}

In my last post I shared a few ways in which a blog written just for your colleagues can inspire them to act…
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Community College Blog

How a Blog Can Inspire Your College’s Faculty and Staff

The importance of training and inspiring Foundation Board Members, alumni and volunteers to act as ambassadors of College cannot be overstated. Often times,…
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Social Media Myths Community College

5 Social Media Myths Your College Foundation Should Ignore

By now, we’ve all figured out that Social Media is here to stay and that it can play an important role in Community…
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Community Connections Rich Gross Solutions

What is a Major Gift?

I am often asked, “What is a major gift? Is it $1,000 . . . $5,000 . . . $10,000?” My reply is…
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Rich Gross Solutions Community College Consulting Coach

How Community Colleges Can Benefit from a Campaign Coach

One of the questions I often get when making a presentation to community college leadership or a foundation board is “why should we…
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Rich Gross Solutions Consulting Councel

The Difference between Consultant and Counsel

As I work with my clients in the field I often identify my role differently depending on the situation. Sometimes I’m a consultant…
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Community College Consulting Decision Making

How to Be a Decision Making Machine

Workshops and seminars offering skills in good decision making practices are springing up. In an era when anything that can go wrong likely…
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Community College Consultants Fundraising Ideas

4 Ways to Increase Online Donations

It’s no secret that the Internet has given community colleges unprecedented ability to engage donors. Social media services, online fundraising strategies, crowd funding…
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Community College Fundraising in the New Economy Hands

Community College Fundraising in the New Economy

Much has been written about the effect globalization and technology are having on the composition of the American workforce and the knowledge and…
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Online Fundraising and Social Media

Will social media fundraising ever live up to its hype?

The efficacy of online fundraising continues to be a puzzlement. For years it has appeared that disaster relief agencies, with their urgent calls…
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Non Profit Fundraising Confusion

3 Ways to Know if You’re Ready For Planned Giving

If you’ve ever attended a planned giving workshop, there’s a good chance you walked away with your head spinning... "NIMCRUTs! CRATs! Exotic estate…
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Higher Education Teachers

What Makes a Good Higher Education Teacher?

In the April 3, 2015 edition of the Chronicle of Higher Education, a commentary entitled “Four Properties of Powerful Teachers” by Rob Jenkins…
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Are Feasibility Studies a Waste of Time for Community Colleges? (Part 2)

In Part 1 of this blog series I responded to two of James LaRose’s contentions about feasibility studies being the “Crack Cocaine” of…
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Are Feasibility Studies a Waste of Time for Community Colleges? (Part 1)

In the March 17th issue of the Chronicle of Philanthropy there is an article about a forthcoming book by James LaRose entitled “Re-Imagining…
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5 Ways You Can Help Your Director of Development Succeed

Do you find yourself caught up in an endless cycle of disappointing fundraising results and Director of Development turnover?  The cause could be…
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How Leadership Training Could have Helped Cooper Union

“Cooper Union Inquiry Puts Nonprofits On Notice,” (New York Times, 4/10/15) is a headline that is not uncommon in today’s world. Fill in…
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How to think Like a Donor - Rich Gross Solutions

How to Think Like a Higher Education Donor

Fundraising is not lecturing or preaching.  Nor is it a Vulcan mind meld – although I’m sure that’s been tried.  Fundraising is not…
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How to Prepare for Media Leaks - Rich Gross Solutions

4 Ways to to Prepare for Media Leaks

Should a cockpit recording of the doomed GermanWings flight been leaked by a German tabloid newspaper? Having viewed a spirited discussion of the…
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