Class officers employ restaurant fundraisers

March 14, 2019 — by Christine Zhang

As class president Derek Hsu walked into MOD Pizza in Westgate West on Feb. 28, he found the restaurant full of customers for the freshman class fundraiser that day. He and his fellow class office members had advertised their MOD Pizza fundraiser in the days preceding the event, and Hsu was happy to see that their event was indeed doing well.

Recently, underclassmen class offices held restaurant fundraisers to raise money for their respective junior proms. Both classes profited greatly from these events, and freshman and sophomore class officers also compared the successes of these events with the earnings from on-campus boba fundraisers.

According to Hsu, the fundraiser, which lasted from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., was located at MOD Pizza because MOD gave them a higher percentage of the proceeds, and also because he wanted something different from the usual fundraisers at Chipotle and Panda Express. MOD Pizza gives 20 percent of the money raised, whereas Chipotle donates 15 percent.

Hsu said that $143.53 was raised from this event, well more than the average boba fundraiser. The money from this fundraiser will be going to the freshman class’s expenses for prom in 2021 and 2022, he said. This was the freshman class office’s first off-campus fundraiser.

In comparison to on-campus boba fundraisers, Hsu said that restaurant fundraisers take more time to organize and have the risk of being less successful. Underclassmen have to go with others to the fundraiser since they cannot drive themselves there, and more advertising is needed to ensure sales. Despite this, Hsu said that a higher profit can be made.

“Restaurant fundraisers are bigger, so if you invest and advertise it correctly, then it should be more successful,” Hsu said.

The sophomore class office held a similar fundraiser at Chipotle on Saratoga Avenue on March 9 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sophomore class vice president Arnav Mangal said that they chose Chipotle because it had brought multiple successes in the past, but this occasion was an exception.

Mangal said that not enough people showed up to the fundraiser. He said that people bought $125 in total from Chipotle, but since $125 was not enough for the restaurant to donate the proceeds, the sophomore class office did not earn anything from this fundraiser. Mangal said that about one in four restaurant fundraisers end up this way.

This fundraiser was the sophomore class’s first off-campus fundraiser this semester. They had one last semester, but despite these fundraisers’ general success, the class office tries not to have them too often since there are restaurant fundraisers from several other clubs and class offices as well.

In contrast to Hsu, Mangal said that off-campus restaurant fundraisers take significantly less work to plan and also have no risk of losing money.

“This earns us the money without us having to do a lot of the work,” Mangal said. “We just advertise, and then after that, the restaurant does the majority of the work.”

He said that the class earns anywhere between $200 and $300 from restaurant fundraisers, whereas boba fundraisers require much more effort to run and yield a maximum profit of $150.

Mangal said that an advantage of boba fundraisers is that there are sales even without advertisement. Students who do not see the advertisements beforehand can still purchase boba once they see the sale at the top of the quad, but for off-campus fundraisers, much more advertising is needed to make sure that people show up.

Mangal said that restaurant fundraisers come in handy when a class needs more money but the class officers are swarmed with work.

“We’re busy right now, so we thought, ‘You know what, we could just do a restaurant fundraiser,’” Mangal said.