Don't Forget to Say Thanks

How to Write a Thank You Letter

 

Why it is important to thank your donor

Donors play an important role in the academic and financial success of many students at the University of Manitoba. Through the generosity and kindness of our numerous donors, many students are able to receive financial support and rewards which enable and encourage them to continue pursuing their academic careers. Frequently donors request nothing in return but many donors find great satisfaction and enjoyment in receiving well-written and thought-out thank you letters which can remind them why they initially provided their gift. Moreover, it gives donors a chance to read about your success as a student along with the opportunity to see first-hand how their donations have contributed to your success. We highly encourage students to send thank you letters to donors when the donor's contact information is provided as it shows good stewardship on behalf of both you and the University.

Writing a Well Written Letter to your Donor

Expressing your appreciation in a clear and precise way that is free of spelling and grammatical errors should be your primary goal when writing to your donor. As you write to your donor, you act as an ambassador of the University of Manitoba to the donor, so it is important that the contents of your letter reflect your high level of academic ability and literacy. Providing a well-written letter to a donor can further illustrate the level of academic achievement you have attained, and in turn, reflects well on the University community as a whole. Below you will find some tips and a template that can act as a starting point when mailing a donor to thank them.

Important tips for writing a letter

1.       Be concise and clear: While some donors may appreciate a simple and short "thank you", other donors may wish to hear a little more detail about your background, how their award has helped you, and your plans for the future. It's important to have enough detail in your letter so that it is sincere and personal, but short enough to respect the donor's time. We recommend that most letters be kept to a maximum of one full page.

2.       Ensure correct spelling and grammar: The quality of your writing reflects your academic ability and achievement, and in part reflects the quality of education you have received during your time at the University of Manitoba. Be sure to read over your letter and have your friends or family members read it over as well to ensure that it is free of any errors.

3.       Express enthusiasm: Being thankful and enthusiastic in your writing can bring great joy to donors and reminds them of why they established the award in the first place.

4.       Use proper formatting and send by letter mail: To maintain a professional appearance, be sure to format your letter correctly (template provided below) and send the letter by letter mail (unless otherwise specified by the donor) to the donor's address we provide to you in your notification letter. We also recommend using the font Times New Roman in 11 point.

While your thank you letter does not have to look exactly like the template provided below, we encourage students to touch on many of the topics while remaining professional and respectful in their writing.

Thank You Letter Template

[Date]

[Mr./Ms./Dr. First and Last Name of Donor(s)]

[Donor Organization (if applicable)]

[Street Address]

[City, Province/State, Country]

[Postal Code/Zip Code]

 

Dear [Mr./Ms./Dr. Last Name or Organization Name],

 

Use the first paragraph to state the purpose of your letter.

 

I am writing to thank you for your generous $[Value] [Name of Award]. I was very happy to learn that I had been selected as the recipient for this award and I would like to express my sincere gratitude to you for providing this generous award.

 

Use the second paragraph to provide some background information about yourself and indicate how this award may have had or may make an impact on your life and/or studies.

 

To provide a little bit of background information on myself, I am currently studying [Major/Subject Area] in the Faculty of [Faculty Name]. I am enrolled in [Value] credit hours this year and I hope to graduate in [time of graduation]. After I have completed my degree, it is my hope that I will continue on to [insert future plans]. Because of your generous contribution to the University of Manitoba, you have played an important role in helping me achieve my goals.

 

Use the third paragraph to reiterate the significance of the award to your studies, and to finish your letter.

 

Having been selected to receive the [Name of Award], the financial costs of pursuing my studies has been significantly reduced, which has enabled me to devote more of my time to focusing on my studies and academic activities. Your generosity and kindness has inspired my efforts which will help me to continuously learn, and it is my hope that one day I may be able to help other students in their studies just as you have helped me.Thank you.

 

Sincerely,

 

[Place your signature here]

 

[Type your name]

[Your street address]

[Your City, Province/State, Country]

[Your Postal Code/Zip Code]