Record Number of Gifts Made for Pitt Day of Giving

Despite rain and a labyrinth of construction outside the building, the University community came out in force to join in the Pitt Day of Giving (PDoG) celebration at the William Pitt Union.

“A University is supported by a lot of people. And, of course, today is about showcasing that support in a very visible way,” said Chancellor Patrick Gallagher in midday remarks to the vibrant blue and gold crowd. 

“But it’s much more than just the dollars. What we’re really after today is the connections. It’s about the participation.”

Pitt cheerleaders, Roc and University administrators mingled; pizza, donuts, T-shirts and prize giveaways added to the fun at the Feb. 25 event held in conjunction with the annual 24-hour fundraising blitz.

Attendance and generosity were rewarded: Guests donated more than 215 pounds of nonperishable food to The Pitt Pantry. Everyone who made a gift to the pantry received blue and gold Pitt socks.

And there were prizes. Among them: 

“Membership and donations are the lifeblood of Osher,” Alu said. “Like so many other things at the University, we couldn’t do it without our generous donors.” 

Friendly challenges and leaderboard rankings pitted groups in competition for bonus gifts. Among the winners:

  • The School of Social Work and Pitt Global each earned $2,000 in the social media challenge to raise the most gifts through social media sharing.
  • Three schools increased their number of donors by more than 200% to top the Raise the Bar challenge for the largest percentage increase in donors. Topping the leaderboard were the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences with a 266% gain that earned a $25,000 bonus, followed by Pitt Dental Medicine with a 249% gain that garnered an additional $15,000 and the School of Medicine with a 228% gain releasing a $10,000 bonus. 
  • In addition, Pitt-Bradford won the regional campus Raise the Bar challenge with an increase of 274%, earning a $7,500 bonus, followed by Pitt-Johnstown with a 154% increase that unlocked an extra $4,500.
  • Faculty and staff met the 1787 Challenge, with a total of 1,806 donors. They unleashed a $5,000 bonus to the General Scholarship Fund by exceeded the goal of 1,787 donors, in a nod to the year of the University’s founding.  

By the end of the day, donors from all 50 states, 31 countries and six continents helped surpass the 2020 Day of Giving goal of 7,000 donors. 

In all, 7,630 individuals made gifts that totaled more than $1.6 million in support of Pitt’s schools, colleges, athletics, student organizations and programs.

See all the winners and totals and read more about 2020 Pitt Day of Giving at Pitt Giving online

  • Leaderboards on the big screen, donation stations and a long line for pizza were all part of the 2020 Pitt Day of Giving celebration at the William Pitt Union. (Aimee Obidzinski/University of Pittsburgh)
  • Pitt Day of Giving shares Chancellor Patrick D. Gallagher’s initials, so naturally a T-shirt would be fitting. (Aimee Obidzinski/University of Pittsburgh)
  • Among the Pitt celebrities on hand for the celebration were football Head Coach Pat Narduzzi and Athletic Director Heather Lyke. (Aimee Obidzinski/University of Pittsburgh)
  • Joshua Zito, a student in the Swanson School of Engineering, supports the day’s objective at a donation station in the William Pitt Union ballroom. (Aimee Obidzinski/University of Pittsburgh)
  • College of General Studies staffer Miranda Mae Alu, a program assistant in Pitt’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, was interviewed by emcee Mark Nootbaar of the Division of Philanthropy & Alumni Engagement. Alu was awarded a $500 bonus donation as the 225th visitor to the Pitt Day of Giving event. (Aimee Obidzinski/University of Pittsburgh)