It’s that time of year when we gather with friends and family for holiday cheer and celebration. Thanksgiving has come and gone in the blink of an eye and, in the coming days, the glimmering lights of the Yule Log ceremonies and Grand Illumination will shine brightly over the Tribe community and will remind us of the marvelous traditions that bind us together for all time coming.
Soon after the fanfare of the festivities come to an end, the curtain will fall on 2016 but will quickly rise again as we bring in a new year.
For so many reasons, I am eagerly anticipating what the next year holds for William & Mary and the people who make the Alma Mater of the Nation so extraordinary. You are the reason why the university continues to rise to great new heights — literally and figuratively — and for that we will be forever grateful.
As chair of the For the Bold campaign, I am thankful for the generosity that has been shown throughout the course of the year. One of the greatest highlights of 2016 was the lighting of the Empire State Building in green and gold — which kicked off our regional campaign in New York City. Check out some of the highlights of the night by watching this great video here.
With your support, we have broken fundraising records and continue to make history with each of our three campaign goals. As I write this, more than $627 million has been raised since the start of the campaign, participation is up and we are finding new and innovative ways to engage our alumni like never before.
In 2016, we announced that more than 42,000 donors — including alumni, parents, students, faculty and friends — gave back to the university because they believe that an investment in William & Mary is a direct pathway to bettering our communities, the nation and the world. Gifts of all sizes are increasing the university’s margin of excellence — including unrestricted gifts made on an annual basis to the Fund for William & Mary.
Tomorrow is Giving Tuesday, a day when many Americans give to causes they are most passionate about. Last year, gifts given to W&M on Giving Tuesday averaged nearly $200, which was greater than the national average. A lot of the gifts supported scholarships so that talented students can afford the opportunity to access a high-caliber education at William & Mary.
I encourage everyone to consider giving back to the university on this national day of giving. Generations of students and faculty will feel the impact of your gifts and the nation and the world will be better for it.
In this edition of the campaign e-newsletter, we have some remarkable stories to share with you. They include the following:
There is also no shortage of great news highlighting current events on campus. Here are just a few:
Thank you again for all of your support and for making 2016 such an exceptional year for W&M and the entire Tribe family. Have a wonderful holiday!
Sue Hanna Gerdelman ’76