Global giving campaign turns local


Katelyn Black, Lifestyle Editor

For the second year in a row, the staff at the Philanthropy and Alumni Engagement Office has brought the worldwide, online “Giving Tuesday” event to the local level through the “Warhawks Give” campaign.

“‘Giving Tuesday’ is a global day of giving fueled by the power of
social media and
collaboration,” said Amy Oeding, the Digital Philanthropy manager in the Office of
Philanthropy and
Alumni Engagement on campus. “This is the second year that UW-Whitewater
Foundation has
participated in Giving Tuesday as a way to raise funds for student success initiatives.”

This year, that student initiative happened to be the Warhawk Emergency Fund, a program that raises money for students struggling with finances other than tuition costs.

“The fund is meant for a financial crisis like dental and medical bills,” said Lauren Smith, director of Adult Learning. “These kinds of things are barriers, and we’ve already seen retention rates rise, but the funding for this program ends in February.”

And for students like senior Ashley Stone, the continuation of this program and programs with similar goals are extremely important for success.

“When I applied for the fund, my grandfather had just suddenly passed away and myself and my family had a lot of new bills coming into our household that was difficult to take care of with funeral costs,” said Stone. “The fund was able to help us pay for monthly bills like mortgage, power/light, groceries, and put gas in my vehicle to get back and forth to school.”

Still, for many of the minds behind the Warhawks Give project, like Oeding, the event is about raising general awareness for all programs, not just the fund.

“Campaigns like this are a great way to create a better understanding of the importance of philanthropy across campus and is an important part of our annual giving strategy,” said Oeding.