Donating to Doane could be the last thing on seniors’ minds after four years of paying thousands of dollars in tuition, room and board.
Forty one percent of the senior class have donated to Doane so far, according to Director of Alumni Relations Anne Ziola.
Seniors donate to the Senior Gift Campaign, a program that was started by the philanthropy committee to encourage seniors to give back, said committee member, senior Peter Strobel.
The organization is striving for 60 percent of the senior class to donate before graduation, Ziola said.
The reason why the committee asks for seniors to give before graduation is because if a senior doesn’t give now, they probably never will, Strobel said. The more years that go by, the more students become disconnected as alumni.
It’s hard to get a bunch of students with no money to care about donating, he said.
“We try to emphasize their own experiences at Doane,” Strobel said. “Even the most bitter person will have their own great memories. That memory was because of a gift from a donor. All scholarships don’t just come naturally.”
It’s important to donate to Doane because without donors, Doane might not be able to have as many scholarships, grants and assets that benefit students around campus, Ziola said.
Each donation, whether it’s five dollars or $10,000, counts towards Doane’s giving percentage, Ziola said. The percentage is the amount of people who give back to Doane. The university will receive more grants the higher the giving percentage is.
The Senior Gift Campaign encourages seniors to donate in general, but pushes seniors to give $20.19 this year, Ziola said. The money will go to the Doane Fund, which is a donation account that funds financial aid for future students and supports athletics, fine arts, campus life and more.
Students can also choose to delegate their donation to any department or organization in the university, Ziola said. This is something she does when she donates.
“I don’t make a million dollars, but I split my gift up and I give part of it to the Doane Fund, because that’s where I got my scholarships and part of it goes to the forensics team,” she said. “That’s where I started my first year, and [the team] is something very dear to my heart.”
Some students don’t like the idea of giving back to Doane.
“Donations to a college shouldn't be as important as they have become,” said an anonymous student in a Doane Student Media survey about senior donations. “Tuition is rising so rapidly that students have to receive the scholarships from donations to have a chance of not being in debt for the rest of their lives. I do not plan on donating to Doane because of the outrageous amount of money I already paid for my degree.”
Strobel thinks seniors also should donate to organizations they would like to see around years from now.
“The hardest thing about asking for money is asking people who don’t have any money,” Strobel said. “But we want Doane to be around [in the future]. It’s passing it forward.”