Crowdfunding has become increasingly popular with the rise of social media. In general terms, crowdfunding uses electronic media to communicate the needs of individuals or groups and allows interested people or organizations to fill those needs. The University of Tennessee’s Alumni Association has launched a new initiative to offer alumni and friends the opportunity to contribute to creative ideas and solutions on a smaller, more intimate scale. The new crowdsourcing program is called Impact Big Ideas.
Twelve projects were selected to launch the Impact Big Ideas program. Of those twelve, two are CCI projects. SIS Director and Professor Ed Cortez’s idea for instituting a UT Comfort K-9 volunteer program was included along with WUTK 90.3 The Rock General Manager Benny Smith’s campaign for WUTK’s Transmitter Tower project.
The UT Comfort K-9 project is raising funds to train a select group of dogs and their handlers as stress and emotional relief workers to be used in instances of natural disasters and other catastrophic emergencies within Tennessee and surrounding states. These types of dog-handler teams have been extremely effective working with first responders after tragic events such as Sandy Hook, the Boston Marathon bombings and the recent Moore, Oklahoma tornado. This project is seeking a total of $7,500 to fund the training and establishment of the program. To donate please go to www.volsconnect.com/k9.
The WUTK Transmitter Tower project is trying to raise $15,000 to replace WUTK’s transmitter tower and transmission line. The transmitter tower sits atop Andy Holt Tower. Due to time, weather, and other elements the tower and transmission line have been damaged to the point that they need to be replaced immediately. The cost of doing this is $15,000. With a new transmitter there is potential for WUTK to increase the station’s terrestrial signal coverage area. This would also enable The Rock and its student broadcasters to reach more listeners with a stronger signal and to support even more community events. It would also help broaden the number of potential businesses and organizations that might be interested in providing crucial underwriting support to WUTK, which is entirely donor supported. To donate, please go to www.volsconnect.com/wutk.
An Impact Big Ideas website has been developed and was launched in early September. Each of the twelve projects is featured and interested donors can easily click to contribute. Additional communications via email and social media are also being distributed. Friends and alumni of CCI are encouraged to consider these worthy projects in an addition to their regular CCI gifts. Plan to pass the word to organizations and businesses who might also be interested in underwriting these worthy projects. If you have a keen interest in one or both of CCI’s inaugural Impact Big Ideas projects please visit their direct links or the Impact Big Ideas site at www.volsconnect.com/impact.