Contacting Business Guidelines

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Hi, my name is _____, and I represent the University of Minnesota chapter of Engineers without Borders. We are a non-profit organization that implements sustainable engineering solutions through community-driven projects worldwide. We are looking to share the stories of our international partner communities and student members to our neighbors and local businesses, which is why I’ve called you today. In a nutshell, I’d like to schedule a lunch hour presentation at __co name__. Am I speaking to the best person to talk about such a possible event?

I’d like to offer to bring some of our students in for an informal lunchtime presentation to __co name__. Such an event would be a great opportunity to provide an interesting change of pace and brain stretch for __co name___’s employees, and it would also be a great networking opportunity. Our chapter’s students would love to have the chance to meet more professional engineers in the area, practice their presentation skills, and gain exposure to your company. I also think __co name__ will be interested to meet some of our student members, as we are some of the U of M’s most motivated engineers. You might think I’m just saying that, but we have numbers to back that up! Our average gpa is 3.6, well above the college of science and engineering’s average.

All I really need to make this event happen is a date, time, and location. Our chapter is very large and will almost certainly be able to bring a few students for anytime you set. We’d just like to invite anyone who is available to spend their lunch time with us if possible. What do you think of working with us?

Must-read notes to remember from Sam

It is unlikely that you are going to get a donation from a cold phone call. You are not looking for a donation in this conversation. You are looking for the chance to talk face to face with as many people in the company as possible (and as high up in the ranks as possible).

Donations come from individual connections and our member’s networks. You need to convince people that our cause is worthy and will benefit them, not just us and our partner communities.

For people looking out for their company, they want to know how our org helps them. Talk up the student experience! Engineering companies are looking for the best and brightest, and EWB is exactly that: we are self-motivated, more talented, and more experienced than our average peers. We have project management skills, problem-solving skills, teamwork skills, a better cultural perspective, and real engineering experience. Basically, pretend this is an interview and sell yourself!

The main reason a company would be interested in our cause of building infrastructure abroad is because they’d want their generosity to our org reflect well on them. Mostly, the value they get from donating/working with us is the opportunity to network with us as students with experience who are potential employees, and to get their name out. Mention that there are mentoring opportunities for professionals who would like to volunteer their time.


-How do we (the business) benefit?<this probably won’t be asked outright, but you MUST address the answer

-If we don’t want to donate money, how else can we get involved?

-What’s the next step?

-Where can I go for more info?

Nice to know

EWB Mission Our mission is to support community-driven development programs worldwide by collaborating with local partners to design and implement sustainable engineering projects, while creating transformative experiences and responsible leaders. EWB-USA UMN inspires the local campus and Twin Cities community to realize the potential of science and engineering to change lives.

EWB Vision Our vision is a world in which the communities with whom we partner have the capacity to sustainably meet their basic human needs, and that our student members have enriched global perspectives through the innovative professional educational opportunities that the EWB-USA Program provides. EWB-USA UMN envisions a community of students developing and applying various skills for the improvement of our world.

We are a certified 501c3 non-profit! So all donations are tax-deductible.

Questions you can’t answer?

Sami Meyer (Fundraising)

Kelly Stifter (President)

Jesse Kasim (Vice-President)

Spencer Borchardt (Project Coordinator)

Buzz words to include

Engage with industry Share our mission Interdisciplinary Training capable engineers who know how to problem solve Sustainable engineering solutions Community driven Solving real world problems on a budget