Arts & Sciences plans campaigns for Giving Day

By: Kate Klein,  Cornell Chronicle
March 9, 2017

Cornell Giving Day 2017 is March 14, one 24-hour period for alumni, parents and friends to come together to support the university. 

“Now in its third year, Giving Day is a special moment for Cornell,” said Fred Van Sickle, vice president for alumni affairs and development. “For one day, we reconnect with one another as Cornellians. Our alumni, friends and parents show their deep commitment through their support for the university’s vital work in a myriad of important areas.”

In the College of Arts & Sciences, Giving Day efforts will focus on three main areas: 

Giving Day also allows participants to choose their favorite department or program, allowing faculty and staff to fulfill their top priorities as they work with students. 

On Giving Day 2016, Cornell raised $6.1 million from 10,100 gifts made by 7,743 donors. More than 1 million people connected digitally through social media and the website givingday.cornell.edu. In the College of Arts & Sciences, those numbers were $468,164 in gifts and 1,218 donors. 

“This year, we hope to surpass the number of gifts and donors from last year,” said Nicole Cook, director of marketing and participation for Cornell Annual Giving Programs. The day is celebratory and accessible, she said, bringing together the whole Cornell community: alumni, parents, friends, faculty, staff and students.

“All gifts – no matter the size – count on Giving Day,” said Cook. “Donors see the impact of their gifts immediately as the total goes up and realize the power of coming together to make a big difference for Cornell.

“You can give to any area of Cornell,” she added, “so it’s a great way to support a special project, favorite department or program, or provide essential additional support for college and unit Annual Funds.”

Giving Day 2017 will highlight the university’s colleges and schools and areas of special interest. Each college and unit has a page on givingday.cornell.edu, and the new search feature invites site visitors to find and support their passion among more than 100 choices.

In keeping with the excitement of giving during one special day, hourly challenges will motivate and celebrate participation among various groups, including students, international donors, faculty and staff. There’s a social media challenge and a challenge for most Annual Fund gifts from recent graduates. The first and last gift will win challenge money for that donor’s college or unit.

GiveGab, an Ithaca-based nonprofit online giving platform founded by two Cornell alumni, provides the new, expansive web experience for Giving Day 2017.

A version of this story appeared in the Cornell Chronicle.

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