Signum University is growing. And like any growing entity – a child, a pet, that alien spawn you found in a smoking meteor crater – we need your support to be able to keep growing and offering innovative educational services.
In the past, we’ve raised funds for specific programs and activities within the Signum family, such as the Mythgard Academy, which offers free, live, interactive classes on speculative fiction. This year, as Signum University expands, we’re expanding our focus and our ambitions to include all of the programs under the Signum umbrella.
See Signum University President Dr. Corey Olsen’s overview of the fund drive.
From Hobbit Day to Halloween
We’re also expanding the fun! The fund drive will kick off on Hobbit Day (Sept. 22) and continue through Halloween (Oct. 31). In addition to our traditional webathon, we’ll have events throughout the entire period, including:
- Interactive events such as trivia challenges
- Live discussions with well-known people
- Exploration of Lord of the Rings Online with Dr. Olsen’s alt Wigend
Concurrent, the Mythgard Institute is hosting a series of short-form speculative writing contests.
In addition to being fun themselves, these activities are designed to highlight the breadth of value that Signum University provides – not just to students but to the public as well. All of these activities will be open to anyone and everyone who wants to join them with no donation required.
How Your Donation Supports Signum University
As Signum University continues to grow, the costs of offering our revolutionary instructional framework grow as well. This is a happy problem, as it means more and more people are becoming aware of our services as we maintain our mission to provide affordable education options to everyone around the world.
Being an online institution, many of the costs associated with that mission increase as more and more people access our offerings. This includes things like:
- Administrative tools for our worldwide team of volunteers, faculty, and work-study staff
- Classroom interface (aka, “Netmoot”) costs
- Recording software licenses
- Website hosting services
- Cloud storage and streaming
- …and much more!
2016 Annual Fund Goals
With the above in mind, we’ve set our annual fund goals to reflect the costs involved with these items. We have four goal levels that we are trying to reach this year.
|Level||Goal||What it covers…|
|Keeping the Lights On||$20,000||Our software licenses and fees for the year, enabling us to keep all our programs running|
|Balancing the Budget||$35,000||All our basic non-employee expenses|
|Establishing a Firm Foundation||$50,000||The above, plus providing funds to cover our certification fees and to expand our student services|
|Building the Future||$100,000||The above, plus enabling us to hire some of our volunteers, stabilizing the institution and allowing us to accomplish much more|
Dr. Corey Olsen provides insight about Signum University’s annual funding goals.
In addition to these campaign goals, throughout the fund drive we’ll have weekly fund goals tied to the Signum and Mythgard programs we are discussing that week. Each weekly goals will offer an additional incentive – like a special event or experience – that will be made possible if that week’s goal is reached.
More information about weekly fund goals will be added as they are announced!
Annual Fund Donor Levels
Given the goals we’ve set for the annual fund drive, this we have adjusted the donor levels to reflect how individual donations help Signum University and our students. These donor levels apply to any donation made throughout the year, not just during the fund drive.
|Level||Annual Donation ($US)||Monthly Donation ($US)||Level Features (Cumulative)|
|Voluntary Assistant Postman||$25||—||Voting privileges in Mythgard Academy courses – One vote per dollar donated|
|Councillor||$100||$10||Membership on the Council of the Wise with the ability to nominate books for Mythgard Academy courses|
|Bounder||$250||$21||Special access to our library of previous courses|
|Ranger||$500||$42||Special access to one of our current courses|
|Thain||$1,000||$85||Full access to a current course|
|Mayor||$5,000||$420||A custom online event hosted in the donor’s honor|
|Gardener||$10,000||$840||Special travel experience|
|Steward||$25,000||$2,100||Custom regional event organized in the donor’s honor|
|President’s Circle||$50,000||$4,200||Special interface with Signum Universitymanagement and special access to events and activities|
Dr. Corey Olsen explains the donor levels in the video below:
Signum University & the Mythgard Institute
Many people have become part of the Signum University family through the popular offerings of the Mythgard Institute. This includes programs such as:
- Classes for our M.A. in Language & Literature
- Mythgard Academy courses
- The Silmarillion Film Project
- Guest Lecture Series*
- Mythgard on LOTRO
- Events such as Mythmoot conferences and regional gatherings like the Midatlantic Speculative Fiction Symposium
We want to acknowledge that many of the Mythgard faithful may not be familiar with Signum University. As the parent institution of Mythgard Institute, fund donated to Signum University also help Mythgard Institute.
For example, Signum University pays for the classroom interface, recording software, hosting services, and other technologies and administrative tools used by Mythgard classes and programs.
* Note that one of the ways Signum University is expanding is by offering even more free, interactive online discussions with persons of note. Watch for information about the new Signum Sessions series in 2016!
Weekly Fund Drive Activities
Each week during the campaign, we will have activities focusing on one of the programs Signum University offers. Weekly themes are as follows:
September 20: Signum University Overview
September 27: Guest Lecture Series
October 4: Lord of the Rings Online (LOTRO)
October 11: Silmarillion Film Project
October 18: Mythgard Academy
October 25: Combined Program Events
If you enjoy the activities offered by Signum University and the Mythgard Institute, please donate today. Donating not only gives you the special access to programs and courses noted, but it lets
We hope to see you at one – or all! – of the events we have planned during this campaign!