Opinion: school fundraisers about more than money

Flanked by orchestra director Julie Blackstock (far left) and assistant director Chase Fickling (back right), orchestra members Henry Cheong (violin), Maxwell Fu (violin), Nikith Kandunuri (bass) and Fowler student teacher Victoria Lien sit at McAlister’s Deli as part of a orchestra in December.

Lucas Barr

Flanked by orchestra director Julie Blackstock (far left) and assistant director Chase Fickling (back right), orchestra members Henry Cheong (violin), Maxwell Fu (violin), Nikith Kandunuri (bass) and Fowler student teacher Victoria Lien sit at McAlister’s Deli as part of a orchestra in December.

Lucas Barr, Guest Contributor

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






With the school having a large variety of clubs, organizations, athletic teams and other groups,  students often need to participate in fundraisers in order to financially support their group. While fundraisers are necessary to cover costs to allow associations to do activities, fundraisers are also vital to building a sense of community among members of a group that can often lead to a successful experience.

Many students might roll their eyes when orchestra members try to sell them endless chocolate bars, or moan when Health Occupations Students of America wants you to purchase bags of popcorn. However, these sales allow classes or groups to pay for things that improve the experience of the group members’ education. For example, band fundraisers raise money for instruments and the marching season. Clubs such as the Junior World Affairs Councils participate in fundraisers that help the less fortunate living around the world by raising money to contribute to the nonprofit organization Kiva.

As a member of orchestra, this was witnessed firsthand. Orchestra had a fundraiser at McAlister’s Deli recently with a portion of the restaurant’s profits that evening going to orchestra. In return, a group of orchestra members entertained customers that evening by performing a collection of holiday songs. The restaurant was packed and the students performing were having a good time hanging out with each other and casually performing. The directors were at the restaurant the entire evening and walked around to individually talk to every orchestra member and their family to thank them for coming. That was of course in addition to periodically playing holiday music along with some students.

Although the fundraiser brought many orchestra members to McAlister’s Deli, the percentage of money from meals ordered was not the main reason for the event. That night orchestra strengthened the sense of community in the group and had a good time creating holiday spirit which was more important than the profit earned.

Doing events such as these make students including myself feel like part of a family. Feeling like part of a group will increase motivation to succeed in all kinds of electives or groups. Orchestra would not be as successful as they are without spending time together and sharing a common desire to do well rather than just take the class. Given this experience as well as observing others, fundraisers can be essential not just for money, but also bringing students together for success.