NAU Giving Day surpasses expectations

Illustration by Aleah Green

The first ever NAU Giving Day, also called OneDay, was celebrated by students and faculty on Wednesday. This day marked the first of an annual tradition meant to celebrate NAU. Students, alumni, faculty and the Flagstaff community were all invited to donate and showcase their NAU pride throughout the day.

According to the NAU Giving Day website, the event was mostly a 24-hour, online fundraising event to honor NAU where anyone could donate to a variety of organizations and groups that they deemed most important. Areas of donations ranged from education in general, specific colleges and programs, athletics and more.

In addition to online, there were also booths, ambassadors and on-campus representation set up outside the University Union to support the cause.

Director of Alumni Engagement Stephanie Smith is an alumna herself and said there was a strong and great turn-out to the first Giving Day. The goals of the event were surpassed before the event was over.

"Our goal all along was two things: participation and sentiment," Smith said. "We wanted to grow and celebrate the pride of NAU, so our target was to rally as an NAU family. We were looking for 500 donors and we have exceeded that. Right now we have 850 donors and the night is still young."

According to the website, about $226,962 was raised, along with 878 gifts donated.

Smith also said with the positive response and overwhelming amounts of donations and support, NAU is looking forward to the future of the event and are planning on celebrating again next year.

"I think the Lumberjack family sent a strong message today," Smith said. "They are behind our students and our entire university. We will most definitely celebrate NAU Giving Day next year and we know our entire Lumberjack family will join us again next year."

In order to get involved, as stated on the website, students can wear blue and gold, share about the NAU Giving Day on social media, become a Giving Day ambassador or simply donate.