$13.7 million raised in 24 hours during Mizzou Giving Day

More than $5 million more was raised than the first annual Mizzou Giving Day last year.
MU community members were encouraged to participate in social media challenges. courtesy

MU raised over $13.7 million during its second annual Mizzou Giving Day, which ran from noon March 14 to noon March 15.

Gifts could be given online, over the phone or mailed during this 24-hour period. Gifts received via mail were accepted from March 12-16. Most MU schools, units and programs reached out to lead donors in advance of Giving Day to increase momentum for the event.

Executive Director Todd McCubbin of the Mizzou Alumni Association helped advise the Mizzou Advancement team during Giving Day. McCubbin also coordinated Mizzou Giving Day in 2017. He said the event is about participation from all types of people as a way to help MU overall.

“It's fun to see all the schools and colleges and departments and different groups that are supportive in some form or fashion,” McCubbin said. “It was just an all-around team effort. It really was about trying to celebrate private gift support for the university, which is very important to us.”

The top five units that raised the most dollars got a bonus from the dollar challenge prize pool in addition to the money they raised. The School of Journalism received a $5 million donation, and additional funds were raised to give the school a total of over $6.2 million in donations. The school received an additional $18,000 for first place in the dollar challenge.

Shannon Burke-Kranzberg, director of advancement at the School of Journalism, said the $5 million donation from Mizzou Giving Day will be used to fund a new building project for the School of Journalism. The rest of the donations will go toward various journalism scholarships and funds.

In November, MU presented a building project plan to the UM System Board of Curators that would demolish Neff Hall and its annex and replace it with a five-story building that houses different School of Journalism programs, including KOMU, the Columbia Missourian and the Novak Leadership Institute, according to the Columbia Missourian. The majority of this project would be funded by donations, Burke-Kranzberg said. Planning is ongoing.

Burke-Kranzberg said donations to the School of Journalism show that the MU community cares about the work the school does to educate journalists and strategic communicators.

“From the J-School’s perspective, we are seeing alumni and people who just care about good journalism stepping up and seeing us as a way they can support quality journalism and quality strategic communications,” Burke-Kranzberg said. “It’s really nice to have a day where we are all talking about the importance of philanthropy because the reality is it fuels a lot of what goes on on this campus.”

Each unit is also a part of a participation challenge, which ranks the top five units based on the number of gifts. Student Affairs received 318 gifts, earning it first place in the challenge and $18,000 for its program.

In addition to the MU colleges and programs receiving aid, the Mizzou Alumni Association created a scholarship challenge. Every dollar given online during the Giving Day period was matched by other donors for up to $2,500 per each chapter of MAA listed.

McCubbin said he was grateful for Giving Day’s success and said it shows how much the MU community cares about the university.

“With lagging state support and enrollment issues the last couple of years, I think it’s a really good, positive day to see what our alums, our friends, our parents, our students think about us, that they would rally together and have that sort of impact over a 24-hour period,” McCubbin said.

MU community members were also encouraged to participate in social media challenges:

  • Hide-and-seek: Five stuffed-animal Truman the Tigers were hidden around campus. Whoever found each tiger first had to take a selfie with it and post the photo to social media.

  • Draw the logo: Participants were asked to draw the MU logo and post it on social media to try to win an award for a program of their choice.

  • Mizzou abroad: People were asked to post a photo of themselves wearing MU gear somewhere around the world.

  • Campus close-up: Mizzou Giving Day posted a close-up photo of a self-proclaimed MU landmark. People were asked to identify the object on social media for a chance win a donation to the unit of their choice. The landmark was the statue of Beetle Bailey, located outside of Reynolds Alumni Center.

  • Show your stripes: The community was asked to share a photo or video of themselves wearing MU’s black and gold to social media.

These posts were tagged with #MizzouGivingDay on social media. The winner of each challenge was able to choose a college, program or school to donate bonus money to.

Senior Jalyn Johnson found a stuffed tiger in the Office of Admissions and was able to award a $40 gift to MU’s Legion of Black Collegians.

Johnson said the 4,065 donors who participated in Giving Day demonstrate the large scale of support that MU has created and maintained.

“Our alumni support system is crazy strong, and I think it shows that people really care about this university, and once you leave, you’re not detached from it,” Johnson said. “It’s always going to be a part of you. You’ll always bleed black and gold.”

During the first Mizzou Giving Day in 2017, more than $8.3 million was raised from over 3,500 individual gifts.

Edited by Morgan Smith | mosmith@themaneater.com

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