Community Engagement

Day of Giving Committee Helps Make History

Oakland University holds its first-ever Day of Giving

Grizz bear standing in front of illustration of weather graphics


icon of a calendarJune 4, 2021

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“Greatness was in the forecast” when the Oakland University community came together on February 2, Groundhog Day, to hold its first-ever Day of Giving. The 24-hour event invited faculty, staff, alumni, students and supporters to contribute to their favorite OU gift funds, which included scholarships, departments, programs and more.

The Day of Giving was founded on the premise that we all have something to give, and when we act together, there is no limit on the impact we can make in the lives of others. The OU community took this challenge to heart. In just 24 hours, 703 donors gave 856 gifts totaling $455,945.

This success was made possible through the dedicated efforts of the Day of Giving Committee. This 11-member committee provided ideas and feedback to help make sure the day was well-rounded, exciting and inclusive. Committee members also volunteered their time, alongside a network of volunteer ambassadors, to share information about the initiative and build enthusiasm and participation in this campus-wide event.

Adrian Benedict, assistant director of annual giving, is grateful to the Day of Giving Committee for their many contributions to the success of the program. She credits this group for helping to shape every facet of the day.

“The OU Day of Giving committee came together to offer ideas and feedback,” she says. “Each volunteer brought a unique lens to the project as their relationship and experiences with the university varied. Because of this, we had students, alumni, staff, faculty and community members all providing thoughtful insight that helped to ensure that the Day of Giving provided opportunities for any member of the OU community to participate and know that they made an impact.”

Different from the giving challenge held in previous years, the Day of Giving was all about OU. “We established the OU Day of Giving to unite the entire community in celebration of all the incredible work taking place at the university,” says Benedict. “This day allowed us to shine a light on what makes Oakland University unique.”

The day was filled with fun and exciting activities that showcased the impact that gifts of all sizes make at OU. The Day of Giving Committee was highly involved in envisioning initiatives that included a Bill Murray look-alike contest, gift challenges and a live reveal to find out if the Grizz would see his shadow on Groundhog Day.

Adding excitement to the day was a generous matching gift made possible by the Oakland University Credit Union. This $50,000 matching gift provided a dollar-for-dollar match, up to $1,000, for each individual donor who made a contribution during the Day of Giving.

All donors who made a gift on the Day of Giving were encouraged to designate their contribution to a fund or program that was meaningful to them. The funds that received the most gifts include Men’s Swimming, Meadow Brook Hall, Student Emergency Fund, Golden Grizzlies Champions Fund and Women’s Swimming.

Learn more about the OU Day of Giving and the many contributions of the Day of Giving Committee at

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