Cherry Blossoms

Coronavirus Operational Updates

For the most up-to-date information and resources on the UW’s response to COVID-19, please visit Visit to learn more about ways that the community can engage with us in this work.

This page provides general information for department and center staff charged with activities related to our donor community. We continue to develop resources as needs are identified.

During this time of modified operations, when tasks are broadly being handled remotely, we encourage you to be creative about how we continue to reach out to our donor community.

Let us know what you need, what questions you have, and how we can help by reaching out to the CAS Advancement Services team.

This page was last updated 10/29/2020.


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Learn more about how acknowledgments are being handled at the College level, and get some ideas for sending out your own messages of gratitude on behalf of your department or center.

If you have questions or could use assistance, please reach out to Lindsay Bailey.

Awarding Scholarships and Fellowships

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Scholarships Administered by Departments/Centers

Most donor-supported funds do not dictate the timing for awards, but that isn’t necessarily true of all funds. If you are unable to distribute particular scholarships/fellowships on your regular schedule, please check the agreement and documentation to verify if there are any restrictions related to timing. Theresa Mejia can help track down agreement documentation and interpret agreement language, as needed.

If you do intend to change the timing for awards, please work with your frontline fundraiser or the CAS Advancement Services team to keep your donors informed about the changes. Donors appreciate up-front communication about how their gifts are being used as well as any changes to timelines – especially if they are used to receiving communications about awardees at specific times.

Scholarships Administered by the Dean's Office

The nominations deadline for those scholarships administered directly by the Dean's Office has changed from March 16 to April 1, 2020. Committee decisions on awards are expected in early May.

Endowment Distributions

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Concerned about how recent financial market fluctuations affect your department’s endowed funds? The annual distribution amount is calculated as a percentage of average market value of the CEF over a rolling five-year window. Calculating distributions based on a five-year rolling average of the market value helps to even out fluctuations in the market, providing consistent support to our programs, departments, and centers.

Learn more about endowments and how distributions are calculated on the University Advancement intranet page.

In-Person Events

Have an upcoming event scheduled? The UW is regularly updating this list of operational resources to help you determine how you should move forward with your planning.

Virtual Events

If you have an event that you plan to live stream or record for others to view online, please let us know! We’d love to share that information more broadly. Email Lauren Zondag with details about your virtual event, or any podcasts, interviews, or filmed lectures, panels, concerts, or performances you have that feature your faculty, students, or department.

Gift Processing

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For details about gift processing during normal operations, please visit the Gift Processing page.

Gift Services Team Schedule During COVID-19

The UW Gift Services team is working rotating remote shifts with two staff members and a manager in the office every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday to open mail, deposit checks, and batch them. This allows the team to work remotely to process, audit, and receipt these gifts. To minimize exposure/risk, eligible individuals will be in once a week, every other day on a rotating basis.

Mail and Processing

Gift Services will accept mail forwarded to Gift Services. Units will need to request this through Mailing Services.

Handling mail from other units:

  • Mail will be opened by Box Number.
  • Those with checks will be processed in their own batch.
  • Each batch is scanned so correspondence and checks will be together.
  • Opened mail is then filed by Box Number.
  • Processed gifts are available in Newsfeed in real time.
  • Advance and Reports will be available after nightly replication.

Other Communications

  • USPS and campus mail are preferred.
  • Encourage donors to make gifts online, through wire transfer, ACH, etc.
  • Units can skip preparing gift transmittals, however, Gift Services asks that units respond promptly to gift allocation questions from Gift Services staff.

Microsoft Teams

Gift Services is currently requesting to be communicated with via Microsoft Teams rather than email. If you do not have Microsoft Teams, please view these instructions to learn how to access/download it.

Once on Microsoft Teams, please reach out to your CAS Advancement Assistant, and they will request you be added to the Gift Services Team. Once you are added, you will receive an email notifying you. The CAS Advancement Assistants are:

Using Microsoft Teams to communicate with Gift Services:

  • Use the Teams General Channel for any gift questions or concerns versus sending emails.
  • Use the Teams General Channel to notify Gift Services of any gifts you are expecting.
Where to Find the Gift Services TeamGift Services General Channel



Student Emergency Funds

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The following instructions are from Tomitha Blake, Assistant Vice Provost, Academic and Student Affairs.

Thank you for thinking of students during this time! If your unit is raising funds for emergency aid, please:

  1. Ask your students to apply through the central Emergency Aid portal.
  2. Email Kay Lewis, copying Tomitha Blake, to let the Office of Financial Aid know that you have a fund available. Also include the contact in your office who will partner with Financial Aid in making awards.

If your unit has already made awards, please send the following information to Kay, copying Tomitha: student information, amount, and reason for support. Kay and her team will do their best to serve as a single point of contact to capture enterprise-wide totals for emergency student support related to COVID-19.

If you have specific questions related to emergency student support during COVID-19, please contact Tomitha Blake.