Annual Phonathon Connects Past and Present YHC Students
Young Harris College alumni recently had the unique opportunity to chat with current students during the annual Phonathon. The seven-week program works to build relationship and raise essential support for YHC.
“I initially applied to be a Phonathon caller because I needed a job,” said Emily Harper, a senior business and public policy major from Powder Springs, who was one of 24 student callers this fall. “When I discovered that I would be speaking with alumni and hearing about their experiences at the College, I knew it was the perfect job for me.”
Phonathon is one of the easiest ways for alumni to pledge their support to the Young Harris Annual Fund. The most recent call session, which ended on Nov. 13, raised more than $43,000 in pledges from more than 460 alumni, including 146 first-time donors to the College. Although the initiative boosts financial support for YHC, it also works to rekindle connections for alumni.
“I chatted with an alumnus from the 1960s and he spoke about YHC like he was a student last year,” said Ali McCollough, a senior music major from Augusta, who noted the conversation made her feel honored to attend a College so revered by its alumni. “He was so supportive of YHC and very interested in hearing about my campus involvement.”
The relationships McCollough has built through her Phonathon experience are not out of the norm for student callers, according to Harper. “I feel as though I’m making lasting connections with former YHC students by sharing the experiences we’ve had and our love of Young Harris,” she said.
The spring Phonathon will kick off in March 2015 when alumni will again have the opportunity to support the College through their pledges and get to know current students on a personal level.
“I loved talking to people who share the common thread of YHC,” said McCollough. “Every alumnus I spoke with—from the 1940s through 2014—all remember Young Harris as being a big family. Even as it has grown, the community has not changed. Working as a Phonathon caller made me realize just how blessed I am to be part of the Enchanted Valley.”