By Elijah Nicholson-Messmer
On Thursday, August 31st, Berea College celebrated its 2nd Annual Giving Day, a 24-hour fundraiser event with the aim of providing scholarships to Berea students.
According to the Office of Alumni relations, “A generous Berea College alumnus kicked off the Giving Day with a donation of $25,000, and also attached a challenge to other Berea Alumni to help double their donation.” An estimated 518 contributors, including students, faculty, staff, and community members, helped reach the goal of raising $200,000.
On Giving Day, the college shared a testimonial video including Berea College students, faculty, staff. and Alumni.
Christian Motley, ’09 said, “I come from a place where people have more opportunity to fail than they do to succeed, if it had not been for Berea, I don’t know where I would be.”
“It was great to see all the places the money goes. One of the reasons I chose Berea College was because of the opportunities this place could give me. I want an education, yes, but I know that I will receive much more than the video highlighted that,” Layla Andrews, ’21, said.
Last year, the goal set for the 1st Annual Giving Day was $25,000, and by the end of the day, the College raised about $168,000, according to the Office of Alumni relations; 58 percent of Berea’s students currently participate in Berea’s Patron program. Sharman N Sugumaran ’20 said, “I was approached a few times during my first semester and to be honest; I was not too keen on the idea. I thought, ‘Why would I donate when all I earn is $4.65 an hour? However, I realized that the money I would be giving back to Berea College pales in comparison to the opportunity I have been given to pursue my dreams. I would like for many others to receive the same opportunity and if this small donation would help that cause, so be it. I will continue to give back to the college, and I urge others to do so as well.”
During the commencement convocation, President Roelofs said, “It’s a great start, and we will spend the rest of the year making sure we take care of you. After all, that is our promise to you, and we will do everything we can to fulfill it.”