Alumni, students, faculty, staff, and friends came together to support scholarships, programs, WGLT, and the Laboratory Schools at Illinois State University on Giving Tuesday, November 29. Donors made 1,670 financial gifts totaling $593,936.

On Giving Tuesday in 2015, donors made more than 1,400 gifts totaling more than $550,000.

Illinois State began participating in Giving Tuesday three years ago, making it one of the first universities in the country to seek support during the worldwide day dedicated to generosity and giving back. Gifts were accepted online and donors were able to designate specific departments, programs, the University’s Laboratory Schools, WGLT, and scholarship funds that benefit students attending Illinois State.

“Our alumni and friends play an active role in building a strong culture of philanthropy here at Illinois State,” said Lora Wey, executive director of Annual Giving. “On Giving Tuesday, we want to show our donors how they’re celebrated on campus, and also help our students see that there’s a vast network of alumni and friends who care deeply for the future of the University.”

Illinois State emeriti, alumni, and friends pledged challenge gifts to encourage others to show their support on Giving Tuesday. To show the University’s appreciation, students signed a giant thank you card located on Milner Plaza.

“The financial gifts received on Giving Tuesday will support a number of very important programs and scholarships at Illinois State,” said President Larry Dietz. “That support is vital to the continued success of our students as they pursue their education. Our thanks go out to the extended Redbird family for their generosity.”