Athletics Day of Giving hauls in nearly half a million

Image courtesy of Amie Canfield of Vassar Athletics.

On Oct. 6, The Miscellany News reported on the Vassar Athletics Day of Giving making its return after a two-year hiatus because of COVID-19. As our paper was released across campus that morning, the fundraiser went live. The campaign ran for 27 hours until noon on Oct. 7 and set a new Athletics Day of Giving record with a total of $495,170 raised.

The campaign’s focus on Athletic Department-wide unity paid dividends, as all 29 teams easily surpassed the donor goals set by the department and the donation goals set by teams individually. 

No team reached its donor goal by less than 111 percent. Multiple teams cleared their donor goals by over 200 percent, and men’s lacrosse reached an outstanding 445 percent. These donor numbers combine to a total of 3,437 department wide donors, good for almost double the 2,000-donor goal set by the campaign.

As a result of the 2,000-donor threshold being met, President Elizabeth Bradley and her husband John Bradley made a $10,000 donation to the department-wide Brewer Fund, an incentive they committed to prior to the campaign’s start, per an email from Director of Athletics Michelle Walsh to student athletes.

Chris and Janet English ’82 later matched the Bradleys’ donation after the campaign reached its donor goal after less than eight hours.

Achieving their donor goals also earned each team a $1,000 donation made in memory of Linda Morgan ’73, a former Vassar women’s basketball player. The generous donation was made by Morgan’s husband, Michael Karam.

After 27 hours of impressive generosity, Walsh expressed gratitude for the campaign’s success. 

“The #Give2Brew campaign was a tremendous success, not only in terms of dollars raised, but also the incredibly positive outreach from our friends, family and alumni throughout the course of the 27 hours,” Walsh commented in a statement. “Thank you to all of our dedicated supporters who demonstrated their unwavering Brewer pride.”

13 teams met their donation goal, with many raising $5,000 more than their goal. 

Of the 20 programs listed for donations on the Day of Giving homepage, all succeeded in raising program-impacting, if not program-changing money, even if some fell just short of their set monetary goal. 

Teams now get to reap the benefits of their donors’ generosity. The over 3,000 donations make it possible for Vassar student-athletes to represent the College around the country and world, with many individual team goals centering around trips to places like Florida, California, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica and the Netherlands. 

Other teams will also enjoy upgrades to their facilities and day-to-day experiences. A new infield tarp will make weather delays less difficult for baseball and new video systems for squash and women’s soccer will make games more accessible to athletes and their supporters. And a whole lot of new equipment will make for better practices, regardless of which of Vassar’s athletic facilities teams call home.

After two years of operating within the constraints of a pandemic, the nearly half a million dollars raised will go a long way for teams and the Athletic Department as a whole.

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