University of South Carolina: ‘We are South Carolina Y’ALL’ (Young Alumni Leaving a Legacy)

Exhibited by
Lola Mauer.
June 16, 2011
Medium of Communication
Direct mail, face to face, online
Target Audience
Individuals, legacy
Type of Charity
Country of Origin
Date of first appearance
March, 2008

SOFII’s view

What a great name! Whoever imagined that you can’t talk to people, even quite young people, about the subject of leaving a legacy? This positive, dynamic campaign strikes all the right cords and makes former students of any age feel proud of their alma mater and want to stay involved with it. This is alumni fundraising at its best – funny, engaging, inspiring. Ultimately, we are sure, it will be very effective. Combining the use of the university’s mascot – Cocky – and the ‘Face of Y’ALL’ idea (see related exhibit) was a stroke of complete brilliance. At present the phrase Young Alumni Leaving a Legacy appears to apply only to annual fund donations from graduates from the past 10 years and not to bequest initiatives among older alumni. SOFII feels that adding this dimension to the campaign will be a natural and relatively easy next step, so we’re sure that before long the University of South Carolina will be receiving substantial bequests (legacies) from its alumni, directly as a result of this delightful initiative.

Creator / originator

Lola Mauer, Steve Farwick, the Pursuant Group, University Publications (postcard component).

Summary / objectives

The ‘We are South Carolina – Y’ALL Young alumni leaving a legacy’ campaign asks graduates to honour their time as Carolina students and make a donation for the benefit of current students. It also encourages graduates to stay connected with their alma mater by making the university a friend on Facebook or my MySpace.


The ‘We are South Carolina Y’ALL’ campaign was launched in the spring of 2008 using a series of postcards. The postcards prompt alumni to think of their cherished memories as students at Carolina, and point out that many of the opportunities they had were thanks to alumni gifts, as state funding and tuition are just not enough.

Graduates are then asked to join the campaign leaving anything between $5 to $25 or more, toward what used to be their college or department, the Carolina Fund, or for scholarships.

Special characteristics

It helps when you can come up with a catchy phrase like the Y’ALL – Young Alumni Leaving a Legacy.


The campaign gets people involved in philanthropy from early on. It is an idea that any university can replicate or adapt in order to help them generate more funds. Plus, the campaign slogan is just great!