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Advance with Sparty! VIPP Visits the MSU Advancement Office

Published: Monday, 12 Dec 2016
Author: VIPP
Department: Visiting International Professional Program

There is a lot to discover at Michigan State University (MSU). Our campus occupies 5,200 acres of land with 538 buildings across East Lansing campus and the State of Michigan. As a world-class university, MSU offers more than 200 programs of undergraduate, graduate, and professional study and over 11,000 faculty and academic and support staff employees support more than 50,000 students. We are almost like a small city in and of itself. That is why the Visiting International Professional Program (VIPP) offers a class called "Discovering MSU" to our visiting scholars, professionals and students. Our goal is to introduce the diverse functions of the university to our visitors and foster future Spartans even if they are here for 6 months or a year. 

When Todd Bradley, instructor of "Discovering MSU" arranged a special field visit to University Advancement (UA) Office on December 2, a delightful surprise was awaiting for our participants - Sparty! As soon as participants saw Sparty they rushed to him to hi-five, hug, and take a picture. What a cheerful moment! Sparty is MSU's mascot. He symbolizes courage, integrity, and ever-lasting friendship. Building deep, long-term relationships with alumni and partners is what University Advancement (UA) does exactly to advance MSU's excellence. Many thanks to Vivianne Robinson, Director of HR, Recruitment and Staff Development at University Advancement Office who prepared lovely welcome.  

Visiting International Professional Program Participants shout "Go Green Go White" with Sparty.

Who is stronger? 

Inside the Advancement Office, Ms. Robinson delivered an informative presentation on Advancement Office's mission, vision, role and function in the university. Its key role in securing financial support for the university through capital campaigns and daily fundraising efforts couldn't be more important. UA Office manages the database of 450,000 living alumni and over 1,000,000 donor information including alumni, friends, corporations, foundations, and other organizations. The 2015-2016 fiscal year is officially the most successful fundraising year in MSU history, raising $272 million, which will count toward the "Empower Extraordinary" campaign. When the campaign launched in October 2014 the said goal was $1.5 billion. To date, more than 249,000 donors have contributed more than $1.2 billion toward the campaign goal, achieving 87% of goal. The campaign will conclude in 2018 and we are very close. All donations will be used to support four pillars of university - student, faculty, community and research. No wonder why MSU is ranked one of the top 70 universities in the world, according to the Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings 2016.

Ms. Vivianne Robinson, Director of HR, Recruitment and Staff Development at University Advancement (UA) Office delivered an informative presentation on UA's role within MSU.

Another delightful surprise of the day was a short visit by Scott Westerman, Associate Vice President of Alumni Relations, which is part of UA Office. He welcomed VIPP participants and took us to the restricted area of football stadium to show the spectacular view.

The spectacular view where broadcasters sit at the Spartan Stadium.

It was a pleasant and educational Friday afternoon for our participants to learn about how MSU advances it mission through UA Office. Many thanks for Todd Bradley, Vivianne Robinson, Scott Westerman and Sparty for welcoming and demonstrating MSU hospitality and friendship to our visiting scholars.

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