Intensives: the Edge You Need Now.

Whether mastering virtual platforms to reach alumni and donors or honing your major gift strategy, Intensives respond to the current demands of the marketplace and prepare you to perform today. Our proven model enables you to put new skills into practice even before your Intensives workshop is over.

CFRE Approved Provider The Giving Institute

Intensives are designed by advancement professionals in education, for advancement professionals in education

Our experienced coaches have been in your shoes. Every one is a former chief advancement officer at a nationally recognized college or university with a successful track record in leading teams, mentoring, direct fundraising, and alumni engagement. With Washburn & McGoldrick, you’ll receive the high caliber of training and insight you seek.

Master the Message and the Mode

Many fundraising and alumni engagement functions have shifted online, and you need to know how to build relationships within a limited medium. At the same time, commanding the platform isn’t everything. Intensives teach you how to create a strategy for achieving a mutually rewarding outcome and then how to deliver it in the digital environment.

The Intensives


Creating Major Gift Success

our foundational training for gift officers

July 22 – August 2, 2024

Creating Major Gift Success challenges gift officers to work collaboratively, think strategically, shorten their time horizons for productivity, and practice the language of engagement, solicitation and closing.


Eight near-daily 75-minute webinars over a defined two-week period interspersed with assignments to view tutorials on core concepts, as well as homework assignments, interactive exercises, and a one-on-one private coaching session for each participant mid-way through the course. Class size limited to allow for ample interaction and Q&A with workshop leaders and other participants.

The workshop can be customized for the group with a case study, role plays, and rapid response exercises drawn from our experience and your own campus examples. Team programs for one institution or a university system can be scheduled at any time. The workshop can be customized for the group with a case study, role plays, and rapid response exercises drawn from our experience and your own campus examples.

Core Content Tutorials

Fifteen tutorials are included from prioritizing and managing your portfolio, through the elements of athletic listening, understanding wealth and philanthropy, prospect qualification, engagement and a four-class series on all aspects of gift solicitation and closing.

A “Visual Map” of the full workshop is available here.

Reference Materials Provided

Portfolio Analysis Worksheet, Tips for Arranging Appointments and Sample Language for outreach to get those appointments, Brainstorming About a Prospect Grid, Prospect Strategy Worksheet with instructions and samples. Our daily Zoom classes will be recorded and made available to you, along with any additional materials, at the conclusion of each class.


Well-suited for teams of gift officers or one university-wide system, or for individual major/planned/principal gift officers as entry-level training or when moving into management of a full prospect portfolio.

The Intensives outline a strategic process and set of tools for a fundraiser to optimize giving and long-term relationships with a portfolio of donors. Having the full team trained in the Intensives process strengthens our major gifts efforts on many levels – how they view their role within the organization; how they collaborate with others to increase donor engagement; how they manage their time; and how they navigate conversations with donors.”

Myrna Bizer, Associate Vice President for Advancement, Rollins College


The fee for attending this workshop is $1,999 per person and includes all course materials. This includes a pre-survey, eight 75-minute interactive Zoom classes, a website containing all course materials, one 1-hour coaching session, a post-survey, and access to the website and all course materials following the workshop. This workshop is limited to 20 participants.


Qualifying Prospects Remotely

the critical entry skill all gift officers need now

Connecting authentically and effectively with new prospective donors requires mastery of the three key elements of qualification while reaching out over video conferencing platforms or the phone. Participants develop their own language for the “why” when getting appointments, practice their skills in a live role play or through a critique of two model conversations, learn how to assess the outcome of a qualification visit and gain practical tips for doing this important work in-person or through video or phone meetings.


90 minute live webinar with asynchronous viewing of two Tutorials in advance: Qualifying Prospects; Athletic Listening.

Reference materials provided

Sample discovery/qualification questions, tips for effective video conferencing.


Teams of gift officers (annual, capital, major, planned, principal) from one institution; teams of advancement staff new to prospect qualification tasks. Also presented periodically for individual gift officers from any institution.

I found the session to be very informative, and timely — as the task of qualifying prospects remotely is certainly not going away. I’m already using notes from the section of setting an agenda to prepare for a meeting tomorrow. Our session helped me prioritize how I want to spend time in that qualifying meeting.”

Mary Haeg, Senior Major and Planned Gift Officer, St. Catherine University


Preparing for Virtual Solicitation

your process for crafting a winning strategy

Moving from engagement into the early stages of gift solicitation requires thoughtful planning and a well-executed and flexible strategy. Participants will participate in a case study and view/critique a model “trial solicitation” conversation that demonstrates how to gather the information needed for a full solicitation while preparing the prospective donor for that next meeting.

This workshop is often presented after the Qualifying Prospects Remotely workshop, providing a lively way to refresh these skills quickly and effectively. (Qualifying Prospects Remotely is a pre-requisite for the Preparing for Virtual Solicitation program. The two workshops are best presented over a two- or three-day period to ensure that the lessons “stick.”)


90 minute live webinar with asynchronous viewing of three core content Tutorials in advance: Moving from Engagement to Solicitation, Developing a Written Solicitation Strategy, When is the Right Time to Ask?

Reference materials provided

Prospect strategy worksheet and two samples to assist in the preparation of a custom strategy for one of the participant’s assigned prospective donors.


Teams of gift officers that have participated in Qualifying Prospects Remotely, or individual gift officers who have already participated in the Qualifying webinar already.

Washburn and McGoldrick delivered outstanding training for our gift officers this fall. Anne Berry and Susan Pettyjohn presented material in an engaging manner and created an online environment that encouraged open dialog and a sense of community that really resonated with the participants. They were able to work with individuals to develop immediately actionable strategies and also plan for a post-pandemic workplace.”

Marianne Horrigan, Associate Vice Chancellor for Advancement & Chief of Staff, University System of Maryland


Gift Planning Strategies (GPS)

A roadmap for fundraising success

Planned gifts are a vital component of all successful fundraising programs and every prospect or donor has the potential to make a planned gift, no matter their age, capacity, or current level of giving. This workshop will explore gift planning as a process for achieving a donor’s personal, financial, and philanthropic goals – potentially resulting in a more generous gift to your institution than the donor thought possible.


A two hour live workshop with asynchronous viewing of two video tutorials in advance: GPS: Helping donors reach their destination (a review of planned gift opportunities by type) and Athletic Listening. The interactive workshop will probe topics including: Who are your best gift planning prospects? Why make a planned gift? (including potential tax benefits) How and When to make a planned gift? and What to give? (a look at non-cash gifts). Participants will move into breakout sessions to review and discuss various gift planning case studies before sharing their observations and recommendations. The workshop will also include a session on navigating gift planning conversations with donors and provide ample time for questions.


Gift officers (annual, capital, major, planned, principal) whether or not their job responsibilities specifically include gift planning; volunteers; board members and others who interact with prospects and donors to your institution.

Meet Our Experienced Coaches

Managing Principal
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