The inaugural Southwestern Giving Day, held from noon to noon on March 5-6, 2019, was an invitation to the entire Southwestern community to make a gift of any size, to any part of campus. In turn, 1,193 donors representing every group of Southwestern constituents raised $462,115 for a wide array of programs, offices, and funds on campus.

“We approached Southwestern Giving Day as an inclusive and interactive event that would allow anyone across the far-reaching Southwestern community to participate in a meaningful way,” said Director of Annual Giving and Advancement Services Wesley Clark. “The outpouring of generosity shows the passion and loyalty of Southwestern’s supporters.”

Highlights from the event include:

  • 260 gifts amounting to just under $40,000 went directly to scholarship funds.
  • Donors supported 120 different designations, including academics departments, athletic teams, students organizations, and many more.
  • The top three alumni class years in terms of participation were 2013, 2002, and 1997.
  • 32 matching and challenge gifts were offered by generous donors, helping to raise $192,000.

Participants used every method of giving to join in the effort, from cash in envelopes to stock transfers, but the majority of gifts were made through an online Giving Day portal where donors could see up-to-date results and leaderboards.

“Giving Day helps strengthen the connection between Southwestern and our donors,” said Paul Secord, Vice President for University Relations. “An event like this is a celebration of our supporters and their impact across campus. It is also a fun and exciting time for new donors or for those who have not given in some time to reconnect with Southwestern.”

“An event like this is a celebration of our supporters and their impact across campus. It is also a fun and exciting time for new donors or for those who have not given in some time to reconnect with Southwestern.”

While most Giving Day festivities were held online, the event was officially kicked off in person in Bishops Lounge at noon on Tuesday, March 5. Students, faculty, and staff gathered to hear brief remarks from President Edward Burger, who announced his own $25,000 matching gift to encourage participation from all donors. Free food and t-shirts were distributed, and students and employees made gifts and signed a “Thank You” board.  

“Every gift was important in making Southwestern Giving Day such a success,” said Kent Huntsman, Associate Vice President for Development. “And the long list of initiatives supported is a testament to the myriad programs and people that impact our students and alumni.”

If you were not able to participate in this year’s Southwestern Giving Day and would like to support Southwestern students and programs, go to www.southwestern.edu/makeagift to make your impact now.