I got a fundraising call from the University of Michigan Law school, which I graduated from, today. The interesting part is that the caller claimed, and it could very well be true, that state support makes up just 2.2% of the law school budget. The notion that it is a public school is more of a state of mind than a reality.
But, listening skills are not in the fund raising staff repetoire. The opening request is for $1,000. I respond, "I am still paying off my student loans, I'm not even going to give you $50." This is followed by: "How about $500?", and "How about $250?" What part of "no" do they not understand? Are my fellow alumni so weak kneed that they change their minds so easily, despite being attorneys who mostly negotiate for a living? Presumably so, as this tactic wouldn't be implemented if it didn't work. But, it doesn't reflect very well on my fellow students that it does work.