KIRK SWENSON, VICE PRESIDENT FOR COLLEGE ADVANCEMENT
The Office of College Advancement achieved its goal of strengthening engagement among Dickinsonians last year by increasing attendance at on-campus and regional events, recruiting new volunteers and holding a record-breaking Day of Giving.
Nearly 2,000 alumni, parents and friends of the college came to Carlisle for Alumni Weekend, Homecoming & Family Weekend, Red & White Day and the Career Conference & Volunteer Leadership Summit. Continuing our effort to expand regional and affinity programing, the office helped alumni connect across generations through 45 affinity-group reunions and 48 events around the world in locations ranging from London to Los Angeles.
The slate of regional gatherings was highlighted by the yearlong celebration of Dickinson’s 50th anniversary of global studies. More than 550 study-abroad alumni marked this milestone through a global education reunion in Washington, D.C., and an Alumni Global Adventures trip to Bologna, Italy.
This increased attendance translated into involvement as Dickinsonians stepped up for their college in several ways. The ranks of Dickinson volunteers grew with 50 new Devils’ Advocates, 300 career volunteers, 285 new Dickinson Admissions Volunteer Society (DAVS) members and eight new Alumni Council members.
On April 19, 2,883 alumni, students, parents, faculty, staff and friends made a recordbreaking 2,580 gifts to the college in 24 hours during the second annual Day of Giving, raising $765,124 for the college. The day contributed to a fundraising total of more than $8 million from 8,610 donors for the fiscal year.
Since joining the college this July, I have been working with my colleagues to leverage the energy that alumni, parents and friends brought to the college last year. Together, we will build greater pride and increase support for Dickinson this year. I invite you to join us for a full slate of on-campus, regional and affinity events this year. We will be working to remind Dickinsonians of the college’s distinctive strengths and our historic mission, while engaging them in the process of defining a plan for our future. I believe that we all can do more for Dickinson, and I invite you to join me in supporting our efforts to move the college forward in service to our students and the world.
PHILANTHROPY REMAINS CRITICAL
New endowed gifts this year helped bring Dickinson’s total endowment to $413 million, and it’s important to note that Dickinson’s endowment—as measured against our number of full-time students—is still well below many of our peer and aspirant institutions. (See chart below.) These better-resourced schools with whom we compete for students can spend more of their endowment returns each year on each of their students.
This leaves the college with two options—increase tuition or continue to invest less in the student experience than our peers. Neither of these options is acceptable—and this is the most compelling reason for increasing support from our alumni, parents and friends.