In a first for the Melbourne Arts Students Society (M-ASS) and the Faculty of Arts, a co-created fundraising pilot raised thousands of dollars for the Faculty’s flagship 110 Scholarship. M-ASS president Michael Hester explains.
By Michael Hester, President, Melbourne Arts Students Society
The Faculty of Arts 110 Scholarship, commemorating 110 years of the Faculty, aims to ensure that an Arts degree continues to be accessible to all students, no matter their background.
The scholarship was established in 2013 to increase support for those students who have demonstrated skill and creative ability, but who struggle to afford a university education or are hampered by circumstances beyond their control.
The Melbourne Arts Students Society (colloquially known as M-ASS) worked collaboratively over the recent semester with Faculty marketing staff on a fundraising pilot for the 110 Scholarship.
After a series of meetings and consultation between staff and students, we decided that a special release 110 Scholarship t-shirt would be the most effective option for campaign. A team of keen Arts students mocked up mood boards inspired by their favourite clothing designs and charities and provided feedback on design proofs from the Faculty.
Associate Dean of Engagement and Advancement at the Faculty of Arts, Associate Professor Sara Wills with the special release 110 Scholarship t-shirts. Photo by David Hannah
The final collaboration produced a t-shirt designed to raise awareness of the assistance available to students, which could be sold both as M-ASS and Faculty of Arts merchandise.
We had a t-shirt design approved and printed in two colours – a classic college grey, and a fetching Unimelb blue – but we still had to sell them.
A grassroots marketing plan of sorts unfolded between M-ASS and the Faculty. We picked one of our popular fortnightly BBQs, Burgerque, as a sales date, and united on South Lawn to share the story of the 110 fund.
Over the course of the afternoon, over 400 students passed through the event, most of whom were not yet aware of the scholarship. To date, the project has raised over $3000 for the 110 Scholarship, of which almost $1000 comes from t-shirt sales.
These funds have been permanently endowed into the 110 Scholarship trust and will continue to support Bachelor of Arts students for generations to come.
After the success of 2018, we at M-ASS look forward to continuing the campaign into the future – a small but promising step towards ensuring the sustainability of the scholarship in future years.
T-shirt sales have raised close to $1000 for the 110 Scholarship. Photo by David Hannah.
What's great about the project is that it promotes the great work done by the Faculty in a really visible and tangible way. I hope that the project shows students that there are people in the University and broader community that support them and embrace the value of investing in an arts education.
Banner image: Students and staff wearing the M-ASS/Faculty of Arts collaborative t-shirt. Photo by David Hannah.