The Eighth Annual Giving Day was held on Wednesday, Oct. 13, and raised 1.98 million dollars. Every year, Lawrence has a fundraising event to support financial aid, scholarships, building maintenance, the library, faculty pay, Björklunden and Lawrence’s athletics programs, according to Director of Annual Giving Amber Nelson. Giving Day has raised 10.8 million dollars for the school over the past eight years.
All alumni from the classes of 2005–2025 who donated money had an additional $500 donated in their name by the Game Changers to incentivize younger Lawrentians to donate to the school. The Game Changers are a group of alumni who pledge to increase their donations each year.
Throughout the day, prizes and games on campus helped to raise awareness for Giving Day, such as Spin the Wheel outside of Warch from 11 a.m.–1 p.m., the Bag Toss from 3–5 p.m. on Main Hall Green and a dance party from 7–8 p.m. in the Nathan Marsh Pusey room. Sunglasses and backpacks were given out to students who participated in events to encourage students to get involved in Giving Day.
For students who couldn’t donate, there were also social media challenges, such as sharing the marked post on the official Lawrence University Facebook page 100 times or correctly identifying LU “close-ups” on Instagram. These challenges helped to unlock more Game Changer funds. Alumni-Development interns and Philanthropy Engagement Center students planned, organized, promoted and staffed the Giving Day events.
Giving Day is a major reason Lawrence is able to offer financial aid to its students, according to senior Jason Bernheimer, a manager at the Philanthropy Engagement Center, since the Giving Day funds go to the areas of the most need. A large part of the funding for scholarships comes from the funds raised on Giving Day.
“Without the generous donations of alumni, our tuition would be much higher than it is today,” Bernheimer said.