With just 71 members, the Caldwell team was significantly smaller than many of the other student organizations that took part in Shack-A-Thon. But the Caldwells still managed to finish third by raising $3,682.50 — about $1,000 more than they raised last year. The Poole College of Management team raised the winning total of $8,222.50.
The Caldwell Fellows boosted their efforts this year with the help of local businesses and various fundraising events during the week of Shack-A-Thon.
“Last year, we introduced a raffle drawing as a new way to bring in donations for Shack-A-Thon, and it was a resounding success,” says Brian Schuster, the Caldwell Fellows team coordinator. “We continued the tradition this year, and we’ve seen many other teams begin to adopt this strategy as well. This has likely been the largest contributor to our increased fundraising.”
Schuster says the team raffled off several prizes, including a five-course meal for two at Bida Manda, a Laotian restaurant in downtown Raleigh, a gift certificate to Noodles & Company and gift baskets from Burt’s Bees. During the week of Shack-A-Thon, the Caldwell Fellows hosted a Friday night cookout and a Build Day lunch for students and parents to supplement their fundraising. They also received support from the Alumni Association Board of Directors.
Schuster says the NC State campus is becoming even more engaged in the Shack-A-Thon spirit.
“Overall the level of competitiveness has jumped up quite a bit since last year,” he says. “I don’t have access to the historical fundraising data, but from what I’ve seen over the past four years, 2012 could have definitely been record-breaking.”
For Schuster, a senior, this year’s Shack-a-Thon will be his last at NC State.
“It’s going to be tough to leave all of this behind,” he says. “Activities like this outside of class have been one of the most rewarding parts of being a student at NC State. Fortunately, I know the competition will live on even if I’m across the country. I look forward to seeing how the team does next year.”
— Jamie Gnazzo