In a year like no other, the third annual Bryant Giving Day on October 28 was a historic success, bringing together the entire Bryant community and raising more than $1 million for essential programs and initiatives. Bulldogs everywhere— more than 2,300 alumni, students, families, faculty, staff, and friends—came together on One Day, as One Community in support of Bryant students, making a record number of 2,712 gifts, from 42 US states and territories and 17 countries around the world.
Bryant Giving Day showed the world what a determined and compassionate community could do together.
On Giving Day, contributions supported more than ninety areas of the University, with more than $575,000 earned through 25 challenge opportunities for Academics, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Athletics, and many more programs. Additionally, 390 donors directed their gift to the new Be Bryant Strong Fund, raising nearly $106,000 for the initiative that has been a critical part of Bryant’s fall reopening plan to ensure that the campus community remains safe and healthy.
“One of Bryant’s strengths is its spirit of generosity, and the way that we are committed to taking care of one another,” said Bryant Trustee and National Alumni Council President Rita Williams-Bogar ’76. “Bryant Giving Day showed the world what a determined and compassionate community could do together.”
Bryant Families, Parents Council rally support on Giving Day
More than 600 Bryant families made contributions on Giving Day, totaling $125,985 and unlocking the $50,000 Bryant Parents Council Challenge provided by Council Chairs Carolyn and Carl Bennett P’21 and additional Council members. “We are so grateful to Bryant and so proud to be part of such a historic day for the Bryant community,” said Carolyn.
Late Professor Lookman “Buky” Folami’s memory inspires community
Last February, Bryant unexpectedly lost beloved Professor of Accounting Lookman “Buky” Folami, Ph.D. Later that spring, several community members formed “Team Buky” in his memory and participated in the #WeAreBryant Virtual 5K, raising critical dollars for the COVID-19 Fund. On Giving Day, his memory inspired the creation of the Professor Lookman “Buky” Folami Partners in Scholarship Fund, raising nearly $5,000 and unlocking a $500 challenge with the final gift of the day, from a student making his senior class gift. Patricia Gomez, Senior Lecturer of Modern Languages, helped organize the effort with other faculty members, “Buky gave us all so much, and I am happy that his memory will continue to inspire our community and support students at Bryant.”
Together, despite unprecedented challenges, we are building a culture of philanthropy at Bryant that will sustain and support this extraordinary institution. It’s a great day to be a Bulldog.
President’s Cup golfers boost Bryant Giving Day success
Despite the cancellation of the President’s Cup Golf Tournament this June, nearly 20 committee members and participants stepped up to contribute $43,700 in support of the President’s Scholarship Fund. Committee Chair David Olney ’82 matched all gifts up to $20,000 with a personal contribution. “I hope we can celebrate Bryant together on the golf course in 2021, but in the meantime, I am glad we could help make Giving Day a tremendous success,” he remarked.
Raymond W. Fogarty ’79 remembered through scholarship challenge
More than 100 alumni, friends, and colleagues made contributions on Giving Day in support of the Raymond Fogarty ’79 International Business Memorial Scholarship, named for the late 35-year Executive Director of the John H. Chafee Center for International Business who died in September 2018. Bryant alumnus Eric Handa ’97 contributed $35,000 to the Fogarty Scholarship Challenge, which inspired an additional $62,000 for international business student aid. “Ray was a friend and mentor to so many and a longtime champion for Bryant,” said Mark S. Murphy, Director of the John H. Chafee Center for International Business. “It is fitting that we honor his legacy this way on a day when our entire community comes together as one.”
Gamechangers and advocates drive historic success
Throughout the day, donors shared messages and encouragement on social media channels, as many small contributions continued to add up. More than 220 Giving Day Advocates helped promote the event and raised $55,000 with their efforts. Challenge gifts had a powerful impact on the day, with the Midnight Match, Puishys Match, and Hourly Challenges unlocking $250,000. Special thanks are due to the generous Bryant Game Changers: Board of Trustees Chairman David ’85 & Terry Beirne, Michael ’67 & Karen Fisher, Bryant Trustee Joe ’80 and Kathi (Jurewicz) ’81, and additional anonymous donors. They created an atmosphere of excitement, competition, and unprecedented participation.
“It was humbling to see the power of our community on Bryant Giving Day,” said David Wegrzyn ’86 P’23, Vice President for University Advancement. “One million dollars is a stunning accomplishment. Together, despite unprecedented challenges, we are building a culture of philanthropy at Bryant that will sustain and support this extraordinary institution. It’s a great day to be a Bulldog.”
Giving Day may be over, but you can still make your Giving Day contribution.