Baker’s Day of Giving began the morning of Sept. 19 at 8 a.m. Over the span of the day, Baker students, faculty, staff and alumni raised $62,033 from 282 donors.
“It was a huge team effort,” Annual Fund Officer, Rachel Hawkins Shuck said.
Shuck said faculty, staff and alums helped throughout the day. The volunteers worked to make thank you calls to every single donor, making sure each one personally felt the gratitude of the university.
Kena Metzger, intern for the development department, worked to recruit student volunteers and said the best part of the day was thanking the donors. She said without them many students wouldn’t be able to experience the “Baker magic” that is part of the university experience.
Prior to the Day of Giving, the event was promoted through email and social media, urging people to preregister, so that on Tuesday, Sept. 19, the university would be able to receive gifts via email and social media.
Since this was the first time Baker had ever done this event, the newness came with many unknowns. Shuck said they were unsure how many people would donate, how much they would raise or who would get involved.
“Going into it, we went into a goal in mind of 300 donors,” Shuck said.
However, no dollar amount was set regarding a projected total. Yet, prior to the day, one Baker alumni couple pledged to match the donations, dollar for dollar, until they reached $15,000.
Shuck expressed how incredibly grateful the Day of Giving team is for the matching gift from Rich and Shannon Howell, 1974 Baker graduates.
Shuck said the entire team is incredibly happy with the results, and at the end of the day, whether $5 or $5,000 was raised, the important thing is that all the money goes to scholarships for future students.
“We knew we were going to be happy and celebrate whatever amount we raised,” Shuck said.
However, she said she was blown away by the amount of parents, faculty and staff that donated gifts.
“They already give so much of their time and energy to Baker so for them to turn around and make a financial commitment to Baker, at any level, was inspiring to see,” Shuck said.
Admissions Counselor Luke Miltz said it was awesome to see the Baker community, students, staff and alumni all come together and get excited.
“It isn’t always easy to get people to give their money so joyfully,” Miltz said.
The scholarship money goes into the general Baker Fund for scholarships. At the university, many scholarships are endowed through alumni who have set up scholarships, or different campus organizations. However, the money raised at the Day of Giving will go into the big pot of scholarships given to students.
“The scholarship money can then be used for a wide variety of things,” Shuck said.
Shuck said it was important to the staff for the money to go directly back to the students.
“We wanted the funding to be meaningful and have a direct impact on future students,” Shuck said.
Metzger said without the scholarships and financial help she, along with many students, would not be able to attend Baker, and is thankful for the students paying it forward.
Shuck said one Baker one goal went so well that things are moving forward and the creation of an annual event is on the radar.