WC donors raise over $340,000 in funds through Mighty Match Day event

By Delaney runge

Copy Editor

Washington College’s annual fall day of giving, Mighty Match Day, took place on Thursday, Oct. 26.

According to the Mighty Match Day website, “Mighty Match Day is an opportunity for the Washington College community, near and far, made up of alumni, faculty, staff, parents and friends, to come together and support the student experience through The Washington Fund.”

Funds raised from this day of giving go towards routine costs of upkeep and maintenance for the College in addition to financing scholarship opportunities for students.

According to Vice President for Advancement, Alumni Relations, and Constituent Engagement Susie Chase ’90, P ’21, organizers started the fall day of giving in 2015. The idea for a matching giving day began in 2019 and is now is run by the Office of Advancement at the College.

This day of giving is “designed to be engaging for our community and it is very specific to areas where the college needs direct philanthropic support,” Chase said.

 Mighty Match Day is named for the way that the day works; for each donation given, donors will match that gift.

“In advance we go to a lot of board members or larger donors and ask if they could put up dollars to match so that anybody who gives on this one day gets to double their gift,” Director of Advancement Services Marc Dykeman said.

In order to encourage donations, different challenges were incorporated into the day that involved various members of the College community. The Mighty Match website listed these out to visualize them for donors.

Some were for broad groups like the Alumni Board, alumni couples, and parents. Others had members compete against one another such as Patrol Sergeant Burton Brown vs. Director of Public Safety Chief Ryan Colman, Ernest A. Howard Professor Emeritus Dr. Richard Gillin vs. Psychology Professor Dr. George Spilich, and Vice President and Dean of Students Sarah Feyerherm vs. Director of Student Engagement Antoine Jordan ‘12.

Associate Vice President for Advancement Emily Kate Smith ’10 says that these challenges were incorporated in order to make giving fun.

“Every gift is matched dollar for dollar and then we have additional challenges and incentives to help drive people to give,” Smith said. “We also try to make things more tangible” by describing more precisely what the donation is going towards such as “the pro bono work done through GIS because that’s something that people can kind of attach to more easily.”

This year there were various areas of giving included in Mighty Match Day highlighted on the Mighty Match webpage. These areas are The Washington Fund, Scholarships Fund, Academic Support, Student Mental Health and Wellness, Elm Tree Fund, Campus Sustainability, Center for Environment and Society, Athey Athletics Fund, and Student Clubs.

The addition of supporting specific student organizations is new this year.

“We did a call to students to submit applications around projects within certain clubs and organizations,” Smith said. “And that was an attempt to try and lift up some of the work our students are doing as well as serving the campus more actively into the day.”

Dykeman, who is in charge of the data portion of donations, was excited for this new aspect to the day of giving.

“I think that it’s a really cool way to get students to understand how the whole funding things works for their clubs,” Dykeman said.

By the end of Might Match Day, the website displayed the final counts of donations at $346,383 from 431 donors.

 “I think it’s really important for the students…to remember that when you walk away at graduation, that your relationship with Washington College doesn’t end and that we care deeply about keeping you engaged and informed and developing programs like mentorships,” Chase said. “We see this as a lifetime .”relationship and not just a four-year relationship.”

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