Finding corporate sponsors for your club can be an important way to supplement student dues and provide additional value for your members. While some clubs have steady annual contributors, other clubs may require more creative outreach to secure a partner.
Before beginning your outreach, the key questions to answer are:
(1) What are your sponsors looking for (i.e., goals, objectives, etc.)
(2) How you will use their funds
The greater visibility you can provide a potential partner on the value their funds will provide both to them and your club members, the greater success you will have in the fundraising process.
what to do after you have secured a sponsorship
1. Issue Your Sponsor an Invoice.
Download and fill out the sponsor invoice form, which should be provided to the sponsor for record-keeping purposes. The sponsor will need this to initiate payment to your student group. Once initiated, the sponsorship could take up to a month to hit the WGA books, depending on the company's accounting processes.
IMPORTANT: Make sure to fill out all [bracketed] fields so your club receives proper credit for the sponsorship.
Address all sponsorships and donations to "Wharton Graduate Association - [Club or Conference Name]" and NOT to The Wharton School or any other University of Pennsylvania entity in order to avoid a 20% overhead deduction charged by the school.
Make sure to communicate this clearly to your sponsor. Although it is laid out in the invoice letter, it is often overlooked and we end up with many unclaimed sponsorships where the sponsor does not specify what club their donation is for.
2. receive confirmation from sponsor
The sponsor should provide you with confirmation of their sponsorship payment, including amount, method of payment (check, wire), and expected date of payment.
3. Send the Sponsor an Official Thank You Letter
Download, fill out, and send an official thank you letter for your sponsor for audit / tax purposes.
4. Upload (1) the invoice and (2) SPonsor confirmation and/or Official Thank You Letter to the WGA box.com account
Upload BOTH (1) the sponsorship invoice and (2) sponsorship confirmation AND /OR an official thank you letter to the WGA's Box.com account using the following titling guidelines:
- Sponsor Invoice: [Club/Conference Name] [Sponsor Name] Invoice [mm.dd.yy]
- Ex: Consulting Club Bain Invoice 09.01.15
- Thank You Letter: [Club/Conference Name] [Sponsor Name] Thank You Letter [mm.dd.yy]
- Ex: Consulting Club Bain Thank You Letter 09.01.15
- Confirmation Email: [Club/Conference Name] [Sponsor Name] Confirmation [mm.dd.yy]
- Ex: Consulting Club Bain Confirmation 09.01.15
We require this information for audit purposes.
5. sponsorship funds will be credited to your quickbooks P&L once they are received (can take 2 weeks to 1 month)
In the event your sponsor does not include club/conference information, funds will be unallocated and the Finance Center will email Club & Conference Treasurers with monthly emails regarding "Unclaimed Funds." This is also available in a shared Google document--the link is sent out to treasurers, presidents, and conference chairs.
Clubs will be required to provide documentation to show that the "unclaimed" funds were intended for them. Proof of payment from the sponsor via email and thank you letter will suffice.
Again, to avoid this situation, as it causes extra work and delays, please communicate and follow up with your sponsors to ensure they sent payment to Wharton Graduate Association AND included the name of your student group.