CWRU supporters go All [in] for fourth annual Day of Giving

CWRU students hold signs spelling "thank you" on steps at the Tink

Case Western Reserve’s supporters set yet another new record in this year’s All [in] Day of Giving—in fact, they crushed the previous mark.

Organizers set a goal of 870 gifts—one more than the all-time record established in 2014— but still 61 donations greater than the 2015 count.

But what looked ambitious before 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, June 15, proved to be a significant underestimation of the scope and size of the university’s contributors.

Not only did the total number of gifts surpass 900… and then… 1,000—it also steamed all the way past 1,100.

The final count: 1,112 gifts, 27 percent more than the previous high.

Director of Annual Giving John Templeman was among those who watched the contributions accumulate most closely over the 24 hours. Even so, he still struggled to comprehend fully how the day could yield such results.

“I’ve always known our alumni and friends are amazing,” Templeman said, “but this year they completely outperformed every projection and even some of our greatest hopes. It’s almost impossible to put into words the degree of gratitude we feel for each and every donor. Ultimately, we will show our appreciation best by ensuring that those funds help achieve our goals for students, faculty and staff.”

All told, the donors gave $269,463—the second highest amount in the four-year history of the Day of Giving. They came from five countries and 41 states, and committed amounts from $1 to $25,000.

A key element of the day’s success involved alumni engagement. As a 2010 graduate explained on Twitter, complete with a series of photographs to illustrate the point: “This is why I went #AllIn. I got a great education & made some amazing friends!”

Current students also stepped forward to help. Said a student at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences on Instagram: “…I am #cwruallin for change and gave to the @mandelschool because it has given me the privilege, opportunity and responsibility to give something back by becoming more.”

The Mandel School’s allies proved among the most active in this year’s giving day. Not only did the school double its Day of Giving goal, but it had the highest participation percentage based on its donor goal. The accomplishment is even more noteworthy given that the Mandel School has the second-smallest number of alumni. As part of a multifaceted incentive program that debuted this year, the school earned an additional $10,000 for its annual fund by virtue of having the highest alumni participation percentage of all of the schools.

In addition to the Mandel School, the School of Law and Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing also surpassed their goals. All three received $5,000 incentive awards for reaching goals tied to the size of their alumni population.

Other campus initiatives also will benefit from the campaign. Donors made unrestricted contributions as well as gifts designated to the Fund Forward undergraduate scholarship campaign, the Kelvin Smith Library and CWRU athletics.

While those gifts arrived, donors were featured on a new thank-you video live stream on the Day of Giving website. Between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. Wednesday, campus volunteers wrote each contributor’s name on a whiteboard that was displayed on the stream minutes after each gift arrived.

Among the employees featured were Naomi Sigg, director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs, Amy Backus, director of athletics, and Tom Matthews, executive director of the Career Center—as well as several school representatives.

“This year saw unparalleled enthusiasm on campus and among our donors,” Templeman said. “We look forward to analyzing the results in more detail to identify ways to encourage even greater involvement next year.”