posted on Dec. 10: Round Up program adds change to student fundraising targets


The McMaster Students Union is rounding up donations for selected student fundraising initiatives with every purchase made at campus bookstores.

Bookstore cashiers ask customers if they want to round up the total of their bill to the nearest dollar, with the change going to the designated targets for that month.

MSU president Sam Minniti thought up the fundraising idea, called “Round Up?,” this summer, while making a purchase in the bookstore.

“It's such a quick, discreet and easy way to raise funds,” said Minniti. “If you say yes, your change will go to the targets of the month.
“It doesn't matter if you're buying a pencil or $300 worth of textbooks, it will round up. It's based on sheer volume.”

So far the initiative has raised almost $5,500 with the funds going to Shinerama, the Terry Fox Run for Cancer, MSU Merit Scholarships, the Marauder Excellence Fund and the Children's Hospital Hamilton (c/o School of Social Work Fundraiser).

The MSU executive board, comprised of four board directors and five members from the Student Representative Assembly elected to the executive choose the specific targets (usually two are selected) for the month after considering all suggestions.

Bookstore director Bob Crawford said all the feedback he has received about the program has been positive.

Bookstore cashiers are sensitive to the fact some customers visit several times a day so it is at their discretion whether to ask a customer if they want to round up the bill, he said.

“It has been favourably received,” Crawford said.

Minniti and Crawford agreed not to run the program during Welcome Week so the initiative didn't add time to customers waiting in line.