Faculty, staff having an impact during ‘I Love WCU’ month

Faculty Staff Giving Champions are currently at 19 percent participation overall. The Division of Advancement is not eligible for the Faculty Staff Giving Champions trophy.

Western Carolina University’s faculty and staff are making their impact known as they participate in the “I Love WCU” fundraising campaign throughout February. “I Love WCU” month kicked off Feb. 1 when more than 1,000 students, faculty and staff shared their personal stories about why they care about Western Carolina University. The stories have been shared via handwritten messages posted across campus and on social media.

“Our faculty and staff are champions for WCU. They commit themselves each day to making WCU the best it can be for our students, programs, and the community and region as a whole,” said Jamie Raynor, assistant vice chancellor for development.

“Our faculty and staff’s financial contributions are an impressive statement to current students and alumni. Increasing the giving participation rate of our employees through the Faculty Staff Giving Champions initiative during ‘I Love WCU’ month also builds confidence in WCU to external donors like corporations and foundations from which the university is seeking funding,” Raynor said.

Faculty and staff will have an unusual opportunity to double the impact of their gifts this February. In honor of “I Love WCU” month, two alumni and WCU Foundation Board members – Kevin Vasquez and Roland Johnson –  will match the first $50,000 contributed through the effort if at least 750 people donate during February. So far, 436 people have made gifts.

Last fiscal year, 23 percent of WCU’s faculty and staff participated in giving back to WCU. This year, the goal is to have at least 26 percent participating in faculty/staff giving, Raynor said. As of Feb. 13, 19 percent of faculty and staff have contributed to the Faculty Staff Giving Champions initiative. Faculty and staff volunteers from each of the divisions and colleges are leading the way in this initiative. A list of volunteers can be found at facultystaffgive.wcu.edu.

Faculty, staff, alumni and friends are encouraged to visit love.wcu.edu to make a gift and to share their own stories about WCU through the university’s social media channels. The site also includes downloadable Valentine’s Day cards, an “I Love WCU” email signature and social media profile images.

A campus event for students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends to celebrate the results of the 2018 “I Love WCU” month and to launch the public phase of the “Lead the Way” comprehensive campaign is scheduled for Thursday, March 1, at 5 p.m. The college or division with the highest giving participation rate will be awarded the inaugural Faculty Staff Giving Champions trophy.

For more information, contact Stephanie Drum, assistant director of annual giving, at 828-227-2863 or sdrum@wcu.edu.