16-1 University Donations and Sponsorships to External Organizations

1.0  Purpose

1.1 Wayne State University ("university") receives numerous requests from external community organizations for   financial support.  In some instances, it is important for the university to participate in activities that financially benefit external organizations for purposes of relationship building, student recruiting, marketing and visibility. This can be accomplished through the purchase of tickets, tables, or sponsorships of community events. This allows university personnel, volunteers or community partners to attend these events to represent the university.  The university also considers in-kind support for external organizations, providing them with items such as WSU t-shirts and book bags. 

1.2 It is essential that the university maximizes its external contributions, provide reasonable consideration to groups requesting support, and centrally track the funds and services provided to these organizations.

1.3 The President has charged the Division of Government and Community Affairs with coordinating the university's support of external community organizations, activities and events. Principal support will be directed to those community events and activities that align with the university's mission and vision, and maintain its commitment of being a “good institutional citizen.”

1.4 Individual event tickets may be purchased with appropriate funds by schools, colleges and divisions.  All other requests for support and sponsorship are to be coordinated through the Division of Government and Community Affairs to ensure that these requests receive proper consideration, and if approved, determine the appropriate levels of financial support and arrange for university representation at the events. 

2.0 Definitions

2.1 Sponsorship: A monetary or in-kind contribution in support of a project or an event.  Generally, the university receives benefit from its sponsorship in the form of advertisement in a program book, recognition at the event, and/or a specified number of tickets or a table at the event.

2.2 Donation:  A monetary or in-kind contribution to a cause or event with no expectation of recompense.

2.3 In-Kind Contribution: A donation of goods or services in lieu of a financial contribution.

2.4  University Mission:  Wayne State’s mission is to create and advance knowledge, prepare a diverse student body to thrive, and positively impact local and global communities.

3.0 Policy

3.1 The Division of Government and Community Affairs will annually recommend a university budget for support of external community and educational events and causes.  Schools, colleges and divisions may also budget to support and sponsor such events, subject to the guidelines of this policy.   

3.2 The Director of Community Affairs will work in close collaboration with the designee(s) of the Provost (Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs, Associate Provost for Diversity and Inclusion), the Vice President of Development (or designee), and the Assistant to the President to review and evaluate all requests for support of the university on an ongoing basis.  All requests will be evaluated according to the specified criteria and priorities outlined below.

3.3 When appropriate, the Division of Government and Community Affairs will seek opportunities for co-sponsorship by one or more university units.

3.4 When necessary, the Division of Government and Community Affairs will contact organizations seeking sponsorships to obtain additional information in consideration of their request (e.g., event purpose, estimated attendance, past WSU support, marketing/promotional opportunities for WSU).

3.5  For sponsorships approved by the committee, the Division of Government and Community Affairs will follow up with the appropriate unit(s) in order to process and/or ensure payment of approved sponsorships.

3.6 The Division of Government and Community Affairs will work with the President’s office to determine the allocation of tickets or seating at events it supports and will also consult with other units providing sponsorships to assure appropriate university representation at supported events.

3.7 The Division of Government and Community Affairs will work the President’s Office to ensure that the university receives of all benefits included with sponsorships (i.e. advertisements, acknowledgements, tickets, special access), and will likewise monitor the same with S/C/D’s.

3.8 The Division of Government and Community Affairs will coordinate all correspondence from the President’s Office to external organizations regarding approved or declined requests for support.  Other University units will be responsible for responding to requests they receive from outside organizations.

4.0 Procedure

4.1 All Schools/Colleges/Divisions will inform Office of Community Affairs or appropriate budget person within the Office of the Provost of all requests for sponsorship and support.  

4.2 The Office of Community Affairs will track all requests for sponsorship and support.

4.3 The Director of Community Affairs, Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs, Associate Provost for Diversity and Inclusion, Vice President of Development, and Assistant to the President will review requests for sponsorship on an ongoing basis and make recommendations based on established criteria.

4.4 Office of Community Affairs and/or respective School/College/Division will send written response to requests or assure one is sent from appropriate S/C/D.  If the request is approved, work with internal unit supporting the event to coordinate the university’s participation.  If the request is denied, include reason for denial in the letter. 

5.0 Sporsorship Criteria

5.1 How does the sponsorship align with the university’s mission and/or strategic plan?  

5.2 Has WSU supported the event is the past?  

5.2.1  If so, how did the university benefit from the sponsorship?  For example:  Branding of the university, recruiting efforts, brings the community to campus, develops a partnership between the organization and the university.

5.3 Does this organization support or partner with WSU in any way?  Will the sponsorship enhance this partnership? 

5.4 Additional consideration will be given to supporting those organizations that support WSU.  For example: Do they support WSU events such as the MLK Luncheon?

5.5 Does the organization have an affiliation with WSU?  For example, does a member of our Board of Governors, a member of the President’s Cabinet, a Dean, or a member of the faculty or staff serve on the organization’s board?

5.6 Does the organization assist the university in other ways?  If so, how?

5.7 Is it a new sponsorship?

5.7.1 Does WSU want to establish and develop a partnership with the organization seeking support?  If so, how will this partnership benefit WSU?

6.0 Duration

6.1 This university policy is revocable at any time with and without notice

7.0 Revocation and Effective Date

7.1 This university policy is effective upon issuance


Signed by M. Roy Wilson, President    March 31, 2016