On the morning of April 11, 2011, more than 50 bright yellow “tags” appeared all over campus, each one highlighting specific ways donor gifts impact the University. Students were encouraged to read the information and think about what their Southwestern Experience would be like without the generosity of others.
Throughout the week, students on the Class Development Councils used the tags and other activities to raise awareness and express gratitude for the University’s annual donors.
“Very few students understand how gifts impact every day life at Southwestern,” says Winston Myers ’13. “Many of us wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for that support.”
On Tuesday, the campus community was invited to help continue the Pirate Bike Program by making a $10 donation. In return, they received a “That’s How We Roll” t-shirt designed by Rory Jones ’13. Jones said the effort was “the most tangible way for students to give back to the University.” As a result, more than $800 was contributed to help with upkeep of current bikes as well as to purchase additional new bikes.
First Year Baily Hayes said she supports the Pirate Bike Program because “it really makes Southwestern stand out from other colleges.”
Ethan Lane ’12 agreed, “They are something that really sets Southwestern apart from a lot of other campuses. Who else has a Pirate Bike?” Several other students cited the convenience of the bikes and the tradition behind them when asked why they give.
“When I’m late for class and I see a Pirate Bike, it makes my day, and I would like for people’s days to continue to be made,” said Kate Steinbach ’12.
During the week, Southwestern professors also participated by wearing buttons that identified them as beneficiaries of gifts to Southwestern. Many indicated that they would not have had the opportunity to do research, travel or write without gifts to faculty enrichment funds.
More than 40 students participated in the Philanthropy Week “grand finale” on Friday by stepping into the “Money Box” for a chance to win prizes. In the process, they learned that tuition doesn’t cover the full cost of a Southwestern education and that without gifts to the University, their financial assistance package wouldn’t be possible.
One student shared these thoughts on Philanthropy Week: “I like to complain about tuition a lot, but I do realize it would be much harder to pay for [our educations] if we did not have gracious donors. [This week] I learned that we really do depend a lot on donations.”