Faculty, staff and retiree giving campaign raises $138,000

All full-time athletics employees participate, unlocking Ram Athletic Fund challenge gift

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Men's basketball coach Will Wade.

Faculty, staff and retirees donated more than $138,000 to Virginia Commonwealth University during a six-week employee giving campaign this spring, the university announced Friday.

The campaign, which ran April 4 to May 15 encouraged VCU and VCU Health employees — and retirees — to make individual donations to the university.

“I think it went well,” said Thomas C. Burke, executive director of the VCU Foundation. “We had excellent work from our leadership and internal committees, which really laid the groundwork for a successful effort.”

Employees and retirees made donations — via payroll deduction or as one-time gifts — to scholarships and programs across the university. In total, 171 donors made gifts via payroll deduction during the six-week campaign to the fund of their choice. As of May 15, 1,450 faculty, staff and retirees have donated $1.37 million to the university this fiscal year.

It shows our family supports efforts at VCU.

Participation was the goal, Burke said in April when the campaign launched.

“It shows our family supports efforts at VCU,” he said. “It demonstrates the type of internal support we have.”

Donor participation was widespread, covering administrative and academic offices. The School of Nursing had nearly 90 percent participation, Burke said. The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics had 100 percent participation during the campaign, unlocking a $25,000 challenge gift from the Ram Athletic Fund advisory board.

VCU baseball coach Shawn Stiffler, lacrosse coach Jen O’Brien and Joe Burns, assistant director for facilities and event operations, co-chaired the athletics effort. The 100 percent participation rate and the matching gift send a strong message, said Glenn Hofmann, executive associate athletics director.

“We felt if we could get 100 percent participation that would really send a message to our student-athletes, alumni, donors and the rest of campus that we believe in what we’re doing,” Hofmann said. “I feel like if you give personally that’s another way of proving that you really want to impact students’ lives.”

That was a common message throughout the campaign, Burke said.

“There were some units that did extremely well,” he said. “There’s a lot of good that comes out of this and it helps prop up the university — not only do these people work here but they support the university philanthropically as well.”


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