The University celebrated its annual day of giving, 1842 Day, on Tuesday, Sept.22. Donors had options of donating to specific groups or causes on campus, ranging from student unions to club sports or even towards improvements to the Center for Engineering Education and Research (CEER).
The day was a great success, as over 7,900 Villanovans raised over $5.9 million for over 125 groups and organizations, with donations representing all 50 states and every graduating class since 1954.
Villanova Athletics took a large role in the success of this day, starting with a goal of 750 donors but ending the day with well over 2,000. Teams had an active presence on social media, posting updates and encouraging all fans to donate to their teams and to the Athletic Department.
The dedication paid off, as over $636,000 was raised for athletic programs across campus. When the goal of 750 donors was passed, an additional gift of $100,000 was unlocked for the Athletic Department from former Villanova runner Gene Mitchell ’89. Mitchell was one of 458 former student athletes to give back to their alma mater.
From the teams, the men’s cross country and track and field team had the most sponsors and the highest number of donations, as 269 supporters raised $48,450. The women’s cross country and track and field teams raised an impressive $18,083 via 142 donations.
Special Olympics was another popular pick, as 213 people donated $16,939. Although this year’s Special Olympics will be virtual instead of in-person, these donations will go towards life-changing opportunities for athletes and their families during the festivities in November.
The Men’s Basketball team raised the second most out of any athletic team during this year’s 1842 Day, with 205 donors giving $46,708.
Club Sports were another prominent choice to support, raising $18,281 from 186 donations, despite the suspension of club sports for the fall. The donations will be used to continue developing the total individual in a team setting: intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, culturally, socially and physically.
Villanova Football received $23,287, with over 115 people donating to the team. Women’s Lacrosse also had over 100 supporters, generating $17,625 for the program.
Villanova Athletics’ UNITAS Initiative also raised over $3,500 to help continue efforts to make the department more inclusive and strengthen the department’s community, in addition to the University community as a whole.
Finally, the collective Villanova Athletic Fund had over $43,769 in donations, with 125 people choosing to back the program and help the University’s student-athletes stay successful on the field and in the classroom.
This year’s 1842 Day was an incredible success, both for the Villanova Athletics Department and for the school community as a whole.
For the Athletics Department to raise over $636,000 is an amazing achievement. This outpouring of support for the school will be used to help programs and student-athletes in many different ways and continue the school’s tradition of excellence.