Supporters of West Virginia University donated a record $15.5 million Wednesday (March 9) during the University’s fifth Day of Giving, a 24-hour online fundraising event held across the University system. More than 5,600 gifts were made, also a new record. The $15.5 million figure tops 2021’s WVU Day of Giving record of $11.9 million raised from just over 5,000 gifts.
“I am very grateful for the generosity of our alumni and friends,” President Gordon Gee said. “Their support illustrates the power of West Virginia University’s purpose and our land-grant mission, which is so near and dear to my heart. These gifts will allow us to continue improving education, health care and prosperity, ultimately transforming lives in our state and our world – now and for future generations.”
This year’s theme, “Go above. Go beyond,” emphasized the critical importance of private donations to WVU with decreased public funding and as many students continue to face the economic challenges presented by the pandemic.
Rusty and Kimberly Hutson’s $1.8 million gift was among the larger contributions on the day, distributed to funds at the John Chambers College of Business and Economics, the WVU School of Nursing and the WVU Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute.
Also included were $1 million contributions each from Dr. Albert Young and Toothman Ford to benefit WVU Medicine Children’s, which held its mediathon as a part of WVU Day of Giving. A $521,000 gift from Harry Anderson was made to support the WVU Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design.
Hourly challenges and participation gifts at the college/school/unit level created a WVU-spirited environment on social media throughout the day.
“This was an incredible day for our University. We are so thankful for all of those who participated in Day of Giving, helping us build excitement and provide critical funding to areas of our University that need it most,” said Kristen Shipp, who led the effort for the WVU Foundation. “The power of collective giving is immeasurable as WVU students and programs will benefit from Mountaineer Nation’s remarkable generosity on this day for years to come.”
First started in 2017, WVU Day of Giving is focused each year on raising private dollars for the University’s greatest priorities and opportunities, including scholarships and unrestricted funds at both the University and unit-specific level. The event also included WVU Health Sciences and the regional campuses in Keyser and Beckley.
The Foundation and University used email and social media to spread the word to alumni and supporters about the special day of giving. An online donation page was set up at dayofgiving.wvu.edu as an easy way for people to make a gift online.
In total, WVU Day of Giving has raised $47.9 million from 20,243 gifts in five years, benefiting student programs, scholarships, research, infrastructure improvements and more.
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