FSSF Auction Kicks Off This Week
This Thursday, March 7, the Fordham Student Sponsored Fellowship will host their annual fundraising auction, auctioning nearly 300 different gifts from local businesses, faculty, and alumni. The event starts at 6 pm in the Atrium with a silent auction, with the remainder of the gifts live auctioned at 7:30 pm in McNally. Professor Neustadt will be serving as auctioneer.
The FSSF is an entirely student-run organization that funds summer internships for Fordham Law students at public interest organizations and government agencies with money raised in the auction. Students can qualify for the grants by being active volunteers with FSSF. Last year, nearly 30 students were awarded fellowship grants of $4,000 (for 1Ls) and $5,000 (for 2Ls) for qualifying summer work.
This year, FSSF consists of 48 volunteers and 8 board members responsible for pulling this event off. FSSF board member Nicole Wetherell emphasized the role the Fordham alumni community plays in its success: “The generosity of Fordham’s Alumni is what keeps our organization going. Alumni are the biggest attendees of our auction and our most generous donors of items. We have many alumni who come back and donate year after year, and we are so grateful for their generous support.”
Alumni, however, are not the only source of donated auction items. The auction catalog is packed with contributions from local businesses such as haircuts, restaurant gift certificates, gym memberships, and jewelry. FSSF board member Blair Barton explains the group’s primary fundraising method, “The majority of items in the catalog come from door to door canvassing of businesses done by students who select a neighborhood to cover, which typically spans about 20 blocks and two avenues. Students then canvass every business in that neighborhood – this includes restaurants, clothing stores, salons, gyms, specialty boutiques, galleries, spas, bars, jewelers, etc … coming from someone who has never even called in to order a pizza over the phone, the task of canvassing can seem daunting, but it’s a lot easier than you would expect … every business I went to was extremely receptive.”
Board member Amanda Hersh had a similar canvassing experience, “Many businesses are willing to donate on the spot, especially the businesses that have donated in the past and already know … how great the exposure [in the auction catalog] for them is.”
Tickets to the event are on sale in the Cafeteria. $20 for students and $35 for non-students includes a wide food selection and an open bar. If you are interested checking out a good many of the items available for bid, check out their auction catalog through the FSSF homepage: www.FSSF.org/events
–Jamie Clouser, staff writer