In the first year of the public phase of the Commit to Georgia Campaign, UGA donors set a new record in fundraising, contributing $227.8 million in new gifts and pledges. This marks the fourth consecutive year that UGA donors have set a new record in fundraising and the first time in the university’s long history that the annual total has surpassed $200 million.
“When we launched the public phase of the campaign last fall, we called on our alumni and friends to help us expand the impact of this great university on the world,” said President Jere W. Morehead. “Clearly, they are answering that call with extraordinary generosity and support, and it is with the deepest sense of gratitude that I say ‘thank you’ for making gifts that are changing lives.”
The goal of the Commit to Georgia Campaign is to raise $1.2 billion by 2020 to increase scholarship support, to enhance the learning environment, and to solve the grand challenges facing society. More donors than ever contributed this year—another all-time record—to reach an overall total of $827 million toward the campaign goal.
“I am not surprised to hear that more donors gave to UGA this year,” said Ruth Bartlett, immediate past president of the UGA Alumni Association. “Our alumni believe strongly in UGA’s vision for the future, and they are eager to help make it a reality.”
Through the UGA Alumni Association, 14 students are currently receiving $37,000 of support from the Alumni Association’s general endowed scholarship, Black Alumni Scholarship and study abroad scholarships. The Women of UGA affinity group was also able to endow the Women of UGA Scholarship in March, which will be awarded next year. We asked some of our alumni volunteers why they give to the university. Here is what they had to say:
Emily Hammond Cook (AB ’07), President of the New York City Chapter “I love UGA and am so deeply grateful to it for all the ways in which it shaped and molded me into who I am today. Those four years in Athens were the most formative years of my life and I wouldn’t be where I am today if not for UGA and the experiences and relationships formed there.”
Brian Dill (AB ’94), UGA Alumni Association Board Vice President, “Financial aid was a key component in my attending and graduating from the University of Georgia. My degree has allowed me to travel the world and I cannot think of a better way to honor this blessing than to assist others in the same endeavor.”
Dominique Holloman (BS ’01, AB ’01, MED ’04, JD ’04), Black Alumni Leadership Council Immediate Past President, “I was blessed during my time as a student to only have to worry about my next assignment or exam. There are students who are hungry and who are unable to purchase needed books and supplies. That is disappointing and unacceptable to me, and I hope it is to other graduates as well. My commitment is scholarships.”
Joshua W. Jones (AB ’08, ABJ ’08, MBA ’16), Young Alumni Leadership Council Fundraising Chair, “I give to empower tomorrow’s leaders. Current students will be the ones who will shape our future at the local, state and national level.”
Rubina Malik (PHD ’15), Women of UGA Leadership Council Mentorship Chair, “The ability to give is a privilege. To be able to support those who might not have the opportunity, or means, to get a formal education without support allows me to fulfill my purpose to cultivate leaders.”
Bill Thomas (AB ’88), UGA Alumni Association Board Secretary, “I have found that staying connected with the university will provide you great opportunities beyond the few years that you spend on campus earning your degree. I give back to the university to ensure that it remains a world class institution, and that it can attract, and retain, deserving students.”