Washburn’s Day of Giving breaks new records


Graphic by Christina Noland

Washburn’s Day of Giving raises over $350,000 Feb. 3, 2022. Nearly 1,200 gifts were received across all of Washburn’s campuses.

Washburn University’s annual Day of Giving took place Thursday, Feb. 3 and saw a record-breaking number of donations, raising the bar yearly since its inception in 2018.
The total amount of gifts and the final dollar amount on Washburn’s Day of Giving were 1,185 and $359,498 respectively. In 2021, about $330,000 was raised and just over 1,100 gifts were received.
“Each year, not only does our dollar amount reach a historic record, but our gift amount does, too,” said Courtney Artman, development director of annual giving at Washburn University Alumni Association and Foundation.
The Day of Giving was brought about by WUAAF because it wanted to celebrate the University’s birthday in a constructive way. It is held each year on the first Thursday of February to highlight the institution’s founding Feb. 6. The day allows for the Washburn community and alumni to come together to either fund the university directly or a project of their choosing.
“It is an opportunity for community stakeholders and alumni and friends of the university, and specifically for us, friends of Washburn Institute of Technology, to really provide a gift to impact students and faculty,” said Mike Strohschein, interim dean for Washburn Institute of Technology.
52 projects across all of Washburn’s campuses were promoted this year, doubling the number of projects in 2021, which was less than 25.
“Our Day of Giving highlights every area on campus, [and] we give each area of campus an opportunity to highlight their own projects,” Artman said.
One of WUAAF’s favorite projects that has been present nearly every year has been the Adopt-A-Turtle project, which was founded by Benjamin Reed, associate professor of biology.
“Dr. Reed in the biology department has been promoting his Adopt-A-Turtle project now for the fourth year,” Artman said. “That is one of our best projects, because it speaks to all alumni of all different ages.”
Each department had its own goals to where gifts would go, such as scholarships, trips or equipment upgrades. All of these are integral to providing the highest education possible.
“International experience, international travel is unbelievably important for the formation, for the development of Washburn students. You open your eyes to different cultures, customs and norms,” said Michael Stoica, professor of marketing and business. “That is why it is extremely important to have funds, to help students to go.”
These gifts make travel possible for Washburn students, not just internationally.
“In athletics, we have some student-athletes who have never gotten the chance to leave Kansas,” said Brittany Lauritsen, assistant athletic director and senior women’s administrator. “The Day of Giving helps to make that happen.”
WUAAF hopes to continue the trend next year to out-do itself and find new ways of reaching out. It plans to partner up with departments on campus that successfully gather donations and break its own records, such as the mass media department, which met its goals and had two ambassadors place in the top five leaderboard challenge and allowed the department to receive additional funds.
“We’re going to look at new ways to reach out to new donors, or young alumni, to give back,” Artman said.
Edited by: Alyssa Storm, Kyle Manthe