It’s hard to believe that the Class of 2017 will become Durham Academy alumni in about nine weeks. Spring marks a time of transition when many students, some who have called DA home for up to 14 years, begin to realize how soon they will start the next chapter of their lives. In a piece penned for The Durham News last year, Veronica Kim ’16 categorized that transition as “a thank-you and a goodbye and everything in between.” As students become alumni, they will carry those seeds of gratitude with them — for teachers who changed their lives or helped them find their passion, or for experiences that influenced the way they see the world.
“It’s a simple, meaningful, fun way to support your alma mater,” said Chris Mark, Director of Annual Giving.
“We love to see alumni when they come back and visit DA or at the regional events that we host each year, but we have 4,500 alumni all over the country and all over the world, and Giving Day is a great way for any DA alum anywhere to connect with their classmates and show their support for DA,” said Xandy Jones ’78, DA Alumni Board Vice President.
The great part about DA’s inaugural Giving Day is that every gift counts, no matter what the dollar amount. Which means young alumni, many of whom are still in college, can participate too.
“It’s actually as simple as giving a few dollars — 5, 10, 20 dollars,” Hannah Lang ’16 said, “just to know that I helped make a tiny little difference in an experience that really just meant the world to me.”
“If we achieve 100 new gifts from alumni in one day, that would equal about a quarter of the total number of alumni gifts we receive in a typical year, so that would be a huge milestone for alumni engagement,” Alumni Director Tim McKenna said.
Giving Day is actually a two-pronged effort. In addition to engaging and uniting alumni across the country online, the goal is also to raise on-campus awareness about what the Durham Academy Fund supports.
Upper School students have been participating as part of that educational effort – writing thank-you notes to alumni who participate in Giving Day. Over the last few weeks, Upper School students have learned about the Durham Academy Fund, the school’s largest single fundraising effort, and how it supports them every day — from academics and financial aid, to arts and athletics, to experiential education and guest speakers.
“By engaging Upper School students in Giving Day, we’re educating them about the many ways DA Fund dollars touch their lives, both inside and outside the classroom,” Mark added. “They’ll graduate from Durham Academy understanding why it’s important to pay it forward to the next generation of DA alumni.”
Are you a DA alumnus or know of one who would like to participate in #DAGivingDay?