Baker University’s annual Day of Giving, held on April 22, raised more than $92,000 from 270 donors to support academic programs at the College of Arts and Sciences in Baldwin City.
“The fourth Day of Giving was a tremendous success,” said Assistant Director of Development Rachel Shuck. “We raised $24,000 more this year than last, and 51 donors made their first-ever gift to Baker University. It was wonderful to see so many members of the Baker community come together to support academics. I am thankful for each and every person who gave back.”
Donors had the opportunity to designate which academic area to support with their gift, and department chairs will use these funds for things such as preprofessional conference fees, guest lecturers, equipment, and faculty opportunities. Each department on campus received funds. Business, psychology, education, and biology were the top recipients. Donors could also choose to make their donation to the Baker Fund. Dr. Darcy Russell, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences will allocate those gifts to the areas where they are needed most.
“I am so grateful to the Baker University alumni community for their contributions to the academic programs within the College of Arts and Sciences,” Russell said. “I know that the faculty have plans to update equipment and resources as well as to provide more opportunities for students to engage in research and to carry out independent projects.”
Matching-gift challenges were announced throughout the day, and more than $35,000 in matches were collectively given by Bob, ’64, and Marcy Irby; Don, ’70, and Donna (Shaw), ’70, Johnson; Ryan, ’06, and Emilee (Merry), ’06, Kuhn; Robert, ’77, and Jan (Haley), ’75, Maxwell; and Ron Taylor, ’74.
In addition to the online challenges, five faculty members, serving as ambassadors, posted videos on social media throughout the day to spread the word about Day of Giving and highlight the significant impact the donations will have on students. The ambassadors were Dr. Sara Crump, professor and chair of the Department of Psychology; Will Duncan, assistant professor of applied mathematics, Emily Kasprzak, assistant professor of theatre; Dr. Kevin McCarthy, professor of business and economics; and Dr. Joe Watson, professor of mass media, chair of the Department of Mass Media and Visual Arts.
“I enjoyed working with faculty from the various academic programs as ambassadors for this fundraising event,” Shuck said. “I always knew the faculty at Baker were special, but to be able to work closely with them and to see their hard work pay off in ways that will benefit their academic areas was truly special.”
Since its inception in 2017, Day of Giving has raised more than $387,000 for university needs through more than 935 gifts.
“Year after year, without fail, the Baker community comes together to make difference,” said President Lynne Murray. “I am inspired by this generosity in supporting our outstanding academic programs.”