Vox polls: How do you feel about the capital campaign?

The past week has brought some pretty significant changes to the decor around campus. In conjunction with the launch of the aggressive fundraising stage of the capital campaign—which aims at raising the staggering sum of $1.5 billion—all of the signs that used to publicize Georgetown’s Jesuit values have been replaced with pictures of doors advertising Campaign for Georgetown.” They’re all over Red Square, on every lamppost, and even greeting campus visitors with big banners across the front of Healy Hall.

So we want to know, just how effective is Georgetown’s latest money-making effort? Does it make you want to write a fat check with “Hoya Saxa” as the memo, or slam one of those doors in the face of whoever is asking?

16 Comments on “Vox polls: How do you feel about the capital campaign?

  1. i usually love your snark vox, but where is the option for people who want to give back to the university that gave them so much? not EVERY dollar obviously, i need to something to live on. but i am grateful for the opportunities i have had at georgetown, and i give what i can. gu has its flaws, but nothing can get better unless people give back! i don’t think the signs are obnoxious, i quite like them.

    ***tuition doesn’t pay for everything y’all***

    georgetown really does need whatever you can give. if you ever cared about anything here: a department, a program, a school or a center, donate to that. it’s not that hard. giving.georgetown.edu

    yes, i am biased. but is it so hard to be grateful and not mean?!

  2. I am usually one of those people who always sides with The Voice over The Hoya (etc.) but this post literally stopped me in my tracks.

    I’m really taken aback by the biting sarcasm you’ve posted here. I am well aware that students and their parents think that “that tuition check should suffice for Georgetown,” but this is simply not true. The fact is, the Campaign is for you, the students of Georgetown. No one expects you to pony up and write a fat check — the whole point of the advertising that I’ve seen is to draw in alums with fat checkbooks to contribute towards the $300 million that the University is trying to raise for student scholarships (so that people like me who had to work 40 hrs/week in retail will actually be able to enjoy college, maybe even write for a student newspaper!) The rest of the money will enhance the student experience by hiring and retaining key faculty members, and maybe even razing the mold-infested Village A apartments to the ground and building a more modern apartment complex in its place! All of this info is readily available on the website that you see posted everywhere — campaign.georgetown.edu

    While I understand that the current signage may be obtrusive to you right now — and trust me, when I was writing those tuition checks I definitely had a chip on my shoulder — think about your fellow students who really need that scholarship money, etc. I am not telling you to drink the Kool-Aid. I am asking you to be more respectful of people’s efforts to help you, and to help your soon-to-be alma mater take care of its own.

  3. right on, @Alumnus!

    is fundraising for need-based scholarships really such a crime?! what about cancer research? what about faculty positions reserved for jesuits so we can actually keep jesuits at georgetown instead of constantly losing them to other schools that can offer them more? really?! i simply do not understand the hostility toward raising money for a good cause.

    sure, georgetown is expensive to attend. but if we wanted to go to a cheap school, we would have. we chose georgetown because it is worth it. it’s the little school that could, competing with the harvards and yales with their impossibly huge endowments. georgetown provides a great education on much fewer resources than peer institutions. why pick on fundraising efforts like this?!

  4. Yo, seriously? Why the bitterness? FYI if you don’t like the “door” thing: the Office of Advancement did all the brainstorming/photography/editing/marketing stuff in-house instead of contracting out to a marketing company like most schools do in order to save some big $$$ for Gtown.. idk about everyone else but I’m pretty happy about that, so I’ll take the doors over some graphic design bs like they’re doing at Princeton.

    PLUS I don’t know if everyone saw, but there’s a big ass tent on the front lawn so that all undergrads +grad students can have a party tonight. I am definitely down with that. Thanks @Alumnus and others like you for footing the bill for tonight’s party. Enhancing student life: you’re doing it right.

  5. agree with all of the points above. if you’ll take the time to re-read an article from the voice itself which you’ve linked to in this post (http://georgetownvoice.com/2011/10/20/capital-campaign-launch-next-week-priorities-defined/) you’ll see that this fundraising effort is about students, as are events this weekend to celebrate it. gtown’s bringing in clinton, mourning, albright, prince turki, tagliabue, etc. on friday for students and alumni, and lighting up campus right after, and has invited the entire campus community to take part… this is clearly a big deal and worth the campus-wide effort. the signage isn’t asking anybody to “give every dollar [they] ever make to the University”, nor are they replacing the jesuit values that were hanging previously with a solicitation, but expressing the importance of this effort to potential donors and rockstar alumni visiting and showing gtown’s seriousness about making it happen. heck, i’m living check-to-check right now so i probably won’t be making a substantial contribution money-wise, but seeing the signs around would make me want to educate myself on how i can give back to a place that’s given me so much. i’m sure when you’re all off doing important things in the world as alumni journalists you’ll remember your experiences at the georgetown voice and want to support your fellow hoyas in tangible ways. if you have questions about the campaign, ask them (which again, pointing to the article from your own paper, it sounds like you’ve got the kind of access you need to make more informed posts than this sarcastic & polarizing poll). you’d learn that this “latest money-making effort” is all about the student experience, it’s an opportunity for gtown to live up to it’s potential and improve where it needs to.

    gtown will always need students like you all from vox to keep it honest and accountable. but before you bring out the knee-jerk cynicism because it’ll get you web traffic, educate yourselves.

  6. Very disappointed, Leigh… Georgetown is finally stepping up to the level of our peer institutions by making a serious effort to grow our endowment so that we may continue accepting the absolute best and brightest young adults from around the world, and you mock their efforts? We complain about the tuition rates, strained financial aid, and limited campus space, and when they take action to raise the money required to fix all of these problems, we complain more. The signs won’t be here for much longer, but the effects of generosity that will result from this weekend and the next five years will be felt on the Hilltop indefinitely.

  7. All this being said, I hope to see everyone tomorrow night at the Campus Lights event at 6:30 PM on Healy Lawn! Should be the biggest party you’ll see in your college career, so come out and celebrate what it means to be a Hoya!

    John Kenchelian
    Board of Directors
    1634 Society

  8. The above make great arguments for the campaign itself. I’ll just throw in that I find the door design itself very aesthetically please.

  9. Georgetown is pretty adept at using its iconic buildings imagery to attract alumni dollars, while simultaneously denying any student presence in any of those buildings.

  10. So take a class in Healy? I have more than enough “presence” there the 5 hours a week I spend in the classroom… I’ll share…

  11. I, for one, think the campaign is a great idea. I agree with most of the above posts.

    Georgetown raises a billion dollars, I get to go to some fancy events, and we take another step towards becoming an even better university? I don’t see why any of that is a problem at all. I hope to see more of this in the future. A few (tasteful) blue banners on some walls? BIG DEAL. I think it looks nice.

  12. Georgetown deserves props for this effort. Most universities, in campaigns like this, couldn’t give a crap about including students. Take advantage of it!

  13. Agreed with all the posts above (Matt excluded). Best of luck to Georgetown with the Campaign for Georgetown. I’m a poor grad student but I will still be trying to support Georgetown with whatever little I can give this year, and for the next couple years, and hopefully make significant contributions after I finish law school (even though I will be deep in debt at that point).
    (Wish I were there tomorrow for the incredible speeches and the party under the tent. I miss Georgetown so much.)

    Voice, the snark isn’t really appreciated in this case. As everyone else has pointed out, Georgetown is doing this for you. For us.

  14. My only fear in this whole campaign is that Georgetown will build new structures while allowing the older ones (but not the antiques) to fall into disrepair. Is the old JesRes getting overhauled? Will we finally be able to use that space?

  15. I actually appreciated this post. While many aspects of the campaign are worthwhile (especially increasing financial aid and working to attract and retain valuable faculty), it’s kind of amusing to see someone poking fun at how garish this campaign launch has been. And while we’re talking about improving student life, there’s a myriad of steps this administration could take to include student input into their decisions. Note the Healy Pub discussions, access to benefits reform, and student code of conduct reform. Although these wouldn’t cost any money, neither would they boost the prestige of the school or the DeGoia presidency the way a billion dollar capital campaign will. So while this is an admirable campaign, it doesn’t mean the administration is doing all it can (or even the most obvious things it can) to improve the student experience.

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