William & Mary’s reputation for excellence is legendary, but it doesn’t just happen by accident. Parents, grandparents and family members are partners in the exceptional education that the university provides for its students.
A crucial component of that partnership is the Parents Fund, a subsidiary of the Fund for William & Mary that provides important monies to help the university offer students the most effective tools for lifelong growth and success. The Parents Fund supports Student Success and Student Life Initiatives at the university and provides for the most urgent needs of our students and the highest priorities of the university.
Make a Difference: Supported Initiatives
From summer research and internship stipends to student leadership training and health and wellness programming, the Parents Fund provides the opportunity for William & Mary students to be part of a strong community and flourish as individuals. Many don’t realize the tremendous depth and breadth of vital programs and initiatives that couldn’t exist without Parents Fund support. Take a moment to learn more about the initiatives the Parents Fund supports.
Get Involved: Parent & Family Council
We also invite you to consider joining the Parent & Family Council, a community of parent leaders that offers families unique opportunities to participate in the life of the university both in Williamsburg and within their own communities. Other Parents Fund giving levels are also available.
Honor Your Student: Senior Family Gift
Giving back is a long-standing William & Mary tradition, and a great way to celebrate your student's achievement and honor your graduate is to make a Senior Family Gift.
Your support of the Parents Fund at any level helps make a number of programs possible that otherwise would not exist at William & Mary. Parents, grandparents and family members can take great pride in knowing that they are enhancing the William & Mary experience for every single student when they make a gift to the Parents Fund.
Together with Parent & Family Programs, the Parents & Family Giving office provides opportunities to engage families at every giving level.
All families (regardless of giving level) enjoy:
- Parent & Family Orientation
- Family Weekend
- A monthly Parent & Family Programs newsletter
- Regular Parent & Family Programs webinars
- A supportive network through the Parent & Family Facebook Group
- Regional parent events and access to W&M regional networks
- Office of Career Development & Professional Engagement volunteer opportunities, such as hosting externships, internships, speaking engagements and more
Parents Fund giving recognition:
- Parent & Family Council (membership with a gift of $10,000 or more)
- Sadler Circle (annual giving of $2,000 or more)
Parents Fund donors are also recognized through the following W&M giving societies:
- Chancellor’s Society (annual giving of $25,000 or more)
- Green & Gold Society (annual giving of $10,000 or more)
- President’s Society (annual giving of $5,000 or more)
- Fourth Century Society (annual giving of $2,000 or more)
For more information about the Parents Fund for William & Mary, contact the Parent & Family Giving team.
Gifts to the Parents Fund support such programs as:
Free Tutoring in the TutorZone
Last year, the TutorZone scheduled more than 3,500 appointment hours with students seeking tutoring services. The $15/hour cost is a barrier to many students seeking services. Thanks to the generous support of the Parents Fund and lead donors, students will now be able to access tutoring services at no cost during the 2022-23 academic year.
TutorZone Peer Coaching for SAS-Registered Students
Provides additional TutorZone support for students registered with Student Accessibility Services (SAS). This will provide one-on-one academic success coaching for students who request time management and study skills as they transition to college or matriculate to graduation.
Academic Wellbeing After-Hours
Funds will support piloting evening programming in the new Academic Wellbeing space. Located on the ground floor of the expanded Sadler Center, programming will help bring attention to this very visible space during evening hours.
Undergraduate Summer Research
Supports three summer research stipends in the Humanities and Social Sciences.
Humanities and Social Sciences Research Fair
Funds are used to showcase the research undertaken by students in the Humanities and Social Sciences.
Supports academic co-curricular activities such as student presentations at conferences and student work with faculty on research projects.
Parents Fund Scholarship
$2,000 scholarship awarded annually to a student who displays leadership that contributes to an enhanced sense of community at William & Mary.
Parents Award for Excellence in Faculty Advising
Presented annually to a faculty member during the Family Weekend opening session, this award recognizes excellence in service as a faculty advisor. Includes a $1,000 research grant to the faculty member selected.
The capacity for students to grow their career experiences through an internship supports their own career development. Advancing the Career cornerstone of Vision2026, this funding helps W&M achieve the goal of providing a career-development experience to every student before they graduate.
Professional Development Travel Fund
The Office of Career Development and Professional Engagement facilitates several trips and activities to help students explore career interests and competencies. Funds help to subsidize travel expenses for students who otherwise would be unable to participate due to financial cost.
Externship Travel Funds
Each year, more students express interest in a pre-internship experience. The number of externship sites continues to expand, and the Parents Fund supports students’ ability to take advantage of these learning opportunities by providing travel funds to the sites.
Suit-Up and Dress-to-Impress Closet
Connects students who have limited financial resources with a discount on professional attire. Funding will also supplement the Dress-to-Impress Closet for students to borrow professional clothing when needed. The goal is for the career-ready student to have no out-of-pocket expense or worry about reimbursement.
Community Engagement Grants
Funds support students engaged in community service during winter and summer breaks, as well as year-round service locally.
Local Community Internships
Funding supports 10 paid student internships during the academic year and summer, created in partnership with local nonprofit organizations. Internships include projects focused on communications and outreach, community engagement, volunteer coordination, fundraising, events, and more.
Education & Youth Development Programs
Funding expands leadership skills of W&M student volunteers and trains them in best practices of youth development. Through training, W&M students provide support for literacy, tutoring, mentoring, and after-school programming for young people in K-12 schools and the community.
Through the GivePulse platform, students can sign up for and track their community involvement, faculty and staff can manage service-learning and community-engaged learning programs, and community partners and service organizations can post opportunities. The university can track participation at various levels and tell the W&M story of community impact.
The Haven Volunteer Training and Supplies
Funding will support The Haven volunteer training so that peer confidential advocates have the knowledge and resources to provide crisis support and assistance to The Haven visitors. Students seeking a safe space at The Haven rely on items and activities that provide safety, comfort, and care while accessing services.
Dialogue & Dessert
Advancing the Vision2026 Democracy cornerstone, the Office of Community Engagement is hosting dialogue sessions focused on helping students engage in civil discourse, civic education and democratic practices. Example topics include how to disagree, building political peace, and free speech on campus.
Preparing for Life as a University Student (PLUS)
Operated by the Center for Student Diversity, PLUS assists enrolling W&M freshmen with limited means and from diverse backgrounds, including many who are the first in their families to attend college, to successfully transition from high school to university life. With Parents Fund support, W&M will double the capacity of PLUS by adding a second one-week summer orientation program and increase the number of monthly workshops designed to aid students through their first-year experience. PLUS will now impact approximately 80 students.
Neurodiversity Summer Bridge Program
Neurodiversity refers to the diversity of brains and minds, including autism, Tourette Syndrome, epilepsy, seizure disorder, ADHD, etc. The Summer Bridge Program is a weekend-long, overnight event that provides incoming neurodivergent students the opportunity to meet and socialize with other neurodivergent students while also providing tools and identifying resources that will assist as they transition from high school to W&M.
Cultural Graduation Celebrations
Support for annual Commencement celebrations including Ceremonia Raíces, Asian, Pacific Islander, and Middle Eastern (APIM).
Cultural Field Trips
The Center for Student Diversity will facilitate a variety of experiential trips with a primary focus on topics related to social justice and civil rights.
Alma Mater Productions (AMP) Major Speaker Sponsorship and Late Night Funding
Funds serve the goal of providing students diverse and fun entertainment and programming on campus, including bands, movies, comedians and more.
Daily Grind and Sadler Terrace Enhancements
After its recent closure, the Parents Fund will return the Daily Grind back to a hub of student life through updates to the interior space, new furniture, and a new sign that will create a welcoming, student-centered space. Funds will also support additional new furniture on the Sadler Terrace, a popular gathering spot for students.
Discourse & DialogueAdvancing the Vision2026 Democracy cornerstone, Student Transition Engagement Programs (STEP) will offer students an opportunity to explore James Monroe’s Highland within the context of the themes of democracy, sustainability, and equity.
Ethics Week Keynote Speaker
Funds support a prominent speaker to provide the keynote address during Ethics Week, a program planned by students in the Honor and Conduct system.
National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) Funding
Allocations for attendance at leadership conferences, social events open to the campus community, and scholarships for prospective members of the NPHC organizations.
Peer Mentorship Coaching Pilot Program
Funding to hire and train peer mentors to facilitate programs in democratic dialogue and civic practice.
Emerging Leaders InstituteFunding supports a new four-week leadership program for new students (current freshmen and new transfers).
WeBe Wellbeing Resource
WeBe is a technology platform that tracks 6 key elements of an individual’s wellbeing every day - emotional experience, relationships, physical health, sleep, activity and spirituality - to engage, educate and inspire users to take better care of their own wellbeing and the wellbeing of those closest to them.
Flu Shots and In-House Labs
Funding allows for immediate results of in-house labs such as Rapid Streps, Monospot, CBC, Urinalysis, and Influenza. Funding defrays the cost of each student's visit and alleviates the stress of deciding whether to receive medical care. The Student Health Center sponsors a student flu clinic each year, partnering with Harris Teeter to administer shots. Funds will cover costs for students whose insurance plans might not be accepted.
Suicide Intervention Program
Pilot for a research-based suicide intervention program for students who are currently struggling with recurrent suicidality. The program is provided as a teletherapy service by Oui Therapeutics.
Mental Health Fair and Screening Resources
A resource fair designed to provide students with information and resources through interactions with Health & Wellness departments, student mental health organizations, the School of Education counseling programming, and community partners. Emphasizes the importance of a holistic approach to mental health, considering all aspects of self that may be impacted from physical health, nutrition, exercise, social interaction, and more.
Rapid Referral Assistance Program
Assists students unable to meet the financial burden associated with emergency mental health services beyond the scope of the Counseling Center (e.g. inpatient treatment, urgent specialized individual therapy).
Light Box Therapy
The rates of depression on college campuses has increased since the pandemic with more students needing and receiving medication for mental health concerns. In order to address the rising levels of depression, it is essential to introduce alternative treatments for self-care. Daily use of therapeutic light therapy is an effective treatment for Non-Seasonal Depression and Seasonal Depression, and the Parents Fund will make light boxes available for students to borrow.
Student Counseling Co-Payments
Provides financial support for student counseling co-payments for students separated from parents due to domestic violence.
Provides care packages for students who have lost a parent or significant other and for students in high-risk hospitalizations.