MELBOURNE, FLA. — The Florida Tech family showed its relentless generosity on Thursday as the university held its 8th annual Day of Giving.
More than 2,500 gifts were contributed by the end of the 24-hour, award-winning event, and the university raised more than $610,000, surpassing half-a-million dollars for the second consecutive year.
“Florida Tech faculty, staff, alumni, students, parents and friends showed up again to make an outstanding Day of Giving,” said Gary Grant, senior vice president for advancement.
The money raised through Day of Giving will support Florida Tech’s greatest needs, including financial aid, research and student activities. Top campaigns included The Panther Fund, which raised $129,220 and Athletics with $107,127, an increase of nearly 15 percent from last year.
Day of Giving was truly a campus-wide event, Grant noted, with multiple departments, offices, venues and staff playing key roles. He said Gordon Patterson, a longtime history professor who served as Panther Fund chairman and master of ceremonies for the day, was tireless.
“His passion for the university is inspiring and no one is more dedicated to remembering our past, appreciating our present, and being hopeful for our future as a university than he is,” Grant said.
Among other highlights:
- 32 student teams participated in the Rock-Paper-Scissors tournament. The winner was Jacob Smith representing the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
- Day of Giving’s first chess tournament was won by faculty member Eric Perlman.
- The Family Feud, skillfully hosted by Alumni Board vice president Sherry Acanfora-Ruohomaki, was won by the faculty and staff team of COES Dean John Harris, faculty members Timothy Muth and Cate Talbot, Dean of Students David McMahon and Mailroom Supervisor Jackie Saunders.
The importance of participation in Day of Giving goes beyond the amount of money raised. No matter the size of individual donations, the level of alumni participation overall is a key factor in how organizations, including the influential ranking publication U.S. News & World Report, perceive the success of a university and how they ultimately rank it.