Every gift counts nearing the end of the “Second Mile” challenge
June 17, 2010 By Leigh Ivey
to get the most out of the Centre experience. “At the heart of it,
most alumni give because they know their gifts really do make a
difference to individual students,” associate vice president for
development and alumni affairs Shawn Lyons says.
Like attending Homecoming weekend each fall, giving to Centre
“keeps alumni connected to the College and encourages them to
remember that they play a crucial role in the life of the institution
even after they’ve left,” says 2006 alumna Megean Kincaid.
As the end of June—and Centre’s fiscal year—draws near, Centre College alumni have an opportunity to regain the national title for alumni giving. Currently, alumni participation is at 51 percent, a number that the alumni office hopes will continue to climb through the end of the month.
To reach the goal of 60 percent participation in alumni giving, Centre needs less than 700 additional donors to give by June 30. To help meet this goal and inspire all alumni to give, an anonymous donor issued the “Second Mile” challenge, which will match every gift to the College—regardless of size—on a two-to-one basis.
Because all gifts are currently being matched two-to-one, “a $100 gift that would have provided financial aid to a worthy student or helped build the library collection or helped a student study overseas will now have a $300 impact,” says Shawn Lyons ’81, associate vice president for development and alumni affairs. “Meeting the challenge is important, but what is really important is that by meeting the challenge, our alumni are going to be helping transform the lives of our students.”
This promise has helped inspire alums, especially young Centre grads without much capital, to give to the College this year. It has also helped remind alumni that every gift counts, be it $5 or $5,000.
“Since I’m in grad school, I’m not able to give as much as I would like to one day,” says Danielle Dodson ’09. “But I give what I can because I know that without Centre, I wouldn’t be in grad school in the first place. Centre gave me so much that I want to make sure I give back and help to ensure that other people get to have the same incredible experience at Centre that I did.”
Megean Kincaid ’06 agrees. “A financial gift is a meaningful gesture to show appreciation and pride as an alum,” she says. “I know that my incredible Centre experience was made possible, in part, by the generosity of those who came before me. Like singing ‘Centre Dear’ or running the Flame, giving is another grand Centre tradition that keeps recent alumni connected to the College and encourages them to remember that they play a crucial role in the life of the institution even after they’ve left.”
Alumni do indeed play a crucial role in the life of the College. Gifts to the Centre Fund provide money for student scholarships and enable current students to pursue their passions for research, music, athletics, community service and leadership.
“We know that our traditionally high levels of alumni support are important to prospective students, the various college rankings and others who look for some objective ways to measure alumni satisfaction with their education,” Lyons says. “We also know that many of our alumni take great pride in those rankings, but I think at the heart of it, most alumni give because they know their gifts really do make a difference to individual students.”
To find out more about how gifts make a difference in the lives of students, or to make a gift, click here.