Sometimes it really does take a community to bring a project to life. That’s where a new donor-supported program comes in. All it takes is logging on to the Catalyst website, where donors can browse the innovative student projects up for funding and make a tax-deductible gift in any amount for such efforts as bringing clean drinking water to needy townspeople or implementing service projects in orphanages.
Northeastern’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders, for instance, used Catalyst donations to help fund the water-distribution system they were designing for the central Ugandan village of Bbanda. And in May, the university’s Baja team showcased its student-designed and -fabricated all-terrain vehicle at a competition—a trip funded in part through Catalyst—that simulates the real-world engineering, design, business, and marketing challenges of bringing a vehicle to mass market.
The Catalyst program was launched by the Office of Alumni Relations and the Northeastern Fund in March. Since then, nine student projects have received 145 gifts, totaling more than $17,000.
After the project is funded, donors receive a message from the organization they supported. They can also check the Catalyst website for updates on the project’s progress.
“The Catalyst program makes it easy to connect with and support some of the most inspiring student projects,” says Jack Moynihan, the vice president for alumni relations and the Northeastern Fund.
“The response from our community has been great and perfectly exemplifies the idea of Huskies helping Huskies.”