UND Today

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UND rallies for Giving Hearts Day on Feb. 10

Gift options expanded to benefit students beyond scholarships in region’s premier 24-hour giving event

After nearly 400 alumni and friends gave a record of more than $160,000 for student scholarships on last year’s annual Giving Hearts Day, the UND Alumni Association & Foundation is doubling down its efforts by extending its reach and expanding the number of giving opportunities.

Laura Dulitz, director of annual giving for the UND Alumni Association & Foundation, says the organization will partner with the Dakota Medical Foundation for the 24-hour giving event Feb. 10. She said organizers aim to put the region on the map as the most philanthropic in the nation. Donors already have generated more than $112 million for charities and nonprofits across North Dakota and northwest Minnesota since the event began in 2008.

“Giving Hearts Day is all about people coming together to show their support, so our goal this year is to really ramp up participation,” Dulitz said. “We know our alumni and donor base is national, even global, so we’re trying to encourage more people to donate this year — and to donate to whatever their true passion and interest is. We’re opening it up to supporting students, period.”

That means donors can give not only to the general student scholarship fund but also to any other initiative or college-based program that directly benefits students. And again this year, she said, the Dakota Medical Foundation will match up to $50,000 in student scholarships.

“There’s so much happening on campus, and we’re asking our alumni and friends of UND to directly help our students who work hard every day to make our campus great,” Dulitz said. “This beloved University is defined by the ambition of our students and alumni, and that’s really what our giving day is about — ensuring our students’ needs are recognized and highlighted by all of the opportunities to support them. This is our day to focus on supporting the whole student experience at UND.”

In fact, “Help Someone” is the special theme of the 2022 campaign, and Dulitz said there are countless ways alumni and friends can help. For example, your gift can help a student …

  • Lighten their financial burden through a scholarship.
  • Get access to groceries in their time of need.
  • Stay on track with their studies in 2022.
  • Make the most of their student experience by giving them access to the best equipment.

The Alumni Association & Foundation is directing donors to support the UND Scholarship Fund, which funds, in part, recruitment and retention scholarships for incoming and current students. Students wishing to be considered for these scholarships should apply through Scholarship Central.

No matter what you choose to gift, you may pre-give your donation, and it will be processed through your account on the official Giving Hearts Day on Feb. 10. Donors also may give during the 24-hour event at the UND Alumni Association & Foundation’s website. Either way, Dulitz says all it takes is a few simple steps and a giving heart. Spread the word. Use #HelpSomeoneatUND.

New this year

The Alumni Association & Foundation also is planning a second event to let students in on some of the giving action.

Allison Johnson, associate director of communication and marketing analytics, said the first Hawks Fighting Hunger drive will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 10 on the main floor of the Memorial Union.

“We looked for ways this year to educate students on the importance of philanthropy,” Johnson explained. “We thought this would be a really great way to do that while also giving students a chance to give back to their campus community.”

Students will be able to drop off a nonperishable food item or personal hygiene product that will go to UND’s Food for Thought Food Pantry and get their name entered for a $250 scholarship drawing.

Surveys have shown nearly 40 percent of college students nationwide have struggled with food insecurity at some time in the previous month.

“That’s alarming, and it could be happening right here without people even realizing it,” Johnson said. “We hope this can become an ongoing event on campus. I mean one can of soup can go a long way. We know our students can feel good about giving back to their community of peers, and we’re excited to see what they can do for Hawks Fighting Hunger.”

TUNE IN FEB. 8: Alumni Magazine will air a virtual conversation with UND alum Pat Traynor, ’88, ’91, at noon Feb. 8. Traynor is executive director of Dakota Medical Foundation, founder of the Impact Foundation and co-founder of Giving Hearts Day. You can watch and listen at Beyond the Pages or go to the UND Alumni Association & Foundation’s Facebook page or Youtube.com/undalumni.org.