‘Building the Nest:’ A university-wide fundraiser for 1969 minutes

Gauri Raje, News Editor

In an effort to raise funds, UTSA will be hosting Giving Day, an opportunity for the university to raise money, from April 4 to April 5, 2023.

“Giving Days are a best practice in higher education funding,” Heather Green, senior director of Annual Giving, said. “Other universities have been hosting these mega-giving days to attract as much money as possible on those days. UTSA’s effort is modeled after those efforts.”

The event’s theme is “Build The Nest” — a nod to the Roadrunner community. 

“Building the Nest is really all about supporting our students,” Green said. “We tend to focus on students’ success and bringing down economic barriers for students to help them succeed, and [ensuring] Giving Day has a big impact on student success is really our focus.”

The university’s first Giving Day took place in 2021. Since then, the event has been an annual practice. 

The event will start at 10:11 a.m. on Tuesday, April 4, and will continue until 7 p.m. the next day —  a total of 1969 minutes that pays homage to the university’s founding year. Throughout this time, individuals can donate to the university’s different departments and programs. 

“Everyone can participate in Giving Day,” Green said. “Even if you can’t give a lot, a little gift counts a lot because we focus on participation. It doesn’t matter if the gift is $5 or $500. It all counts.”

In 2021, a total of 2,217 donors participated and over $344,000 was raised. In 2022, this number increased to 2,747, with a total of over $577,000 raised. For 2023, the goal is to hit 3,000 donors.

“A lot of that has to do [with the fact that] our alumni base is a little bit younger than other institutions who have been around longer than us, so we focus on just getting people to make a gift so that they can make a difference at UTSA,” Green added. 

Green also emphasized that sharing details about the event on social media and “[talking] about why UTSA is important [and] why people should invest in it” is just as important and helpful.

Donors can choose to donate to participating departments and programs, and other programs. 

“The programs that are on the website are the ones that are being highlighted or are actively participating in Giving Day,” Green said. 

All the colleges and schools at the university participate in the event alongside programs like the Roadrunner Pantry and UTSA Athletics. This year, there are around 50 projects that are currently listed on the website. 

“So, all the major programs and then those efforts that are really important to our students and their success and things that donors like to support [are listed],” Green said. 

The three programs on the leaderboard with the most donations and donors can earn extra prize money. Last year, the program with the most donations and donors was UTSA Athletics, which received the prize for both categories. This year, the event also offers second and third-place prizes.

Departments and programs can use the funds they raised for a variety of things like scholarships and funding for student success centers and student-related programming. 

For anyone interested in donating, the event’s websitehttps://givingday.utsa.edu/ — will be live in the aforementioned window. In addition, more information about different departments and projects and their focus for the year can also be found on the website.