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College Coffee kicks off #ElonDay festivities

Students, faculty and staff celebrated Elon University on March 8, 2016, in a special gathering around Fonville Fountain where revelers heard from two young alumni about the value and power of giving back to their alma mater.

#ElonDay's College Coffee celebration took place around Fonville Fountain on March 8, 2016.

The power of giving at Elon University was on full display Tuesday morning at a special College Coffee to celebrate #ElonDay, a 24-hour celebration of pride in the university that encourages engagement and philanthropy of all members in the campus community and around the globe.

There was plenty on hand with which to celebrate the third annual #ElonDay. Coffee. Donuts. Sunshine. Selfies with the Phoenix. And free Elon gear featuring the university’s new monogram and updated athletics logo.

From a podium on the steps of Alamance building, Ricky Rosati ’14 and Jasmine Turner ’15, youth trustees on the Elon University Board of Trustees, addressed the hundreds of people surrounding Fonville Fountain  starting with the announcement that donors have already met the #ElonDay $100,000 Champion Challenge offered by the Elon Alumni Board.

Rocky Rosati '14, youth trustee on the Elon University Board of Trustees

Under the challenge, if the university received 500 gifts by 9:30 a.m., the Elon Alumni Board would make an additional $100,000 gift.

“Today is our opportunity to come together with gifts of all sizes to accomplish great things,” Rosati said. “Hundreds of alumni and parents have already stepped forward to make this goal a reality by serving as Elon Day champions. Leading into today, these champions volunteered to reach out to their own Elon networks and encourage others to participate.”

With the first #ElonDay challenge in the books, Turner announced a new $100,000 “Raise the Banner Match.” Starting at College Coffee, all gifts to Elon would be matched dollar for dollar up to $100,000, courtesy of the Brightwater Fund and the Jarecki Family Foundation.

“For example, if you make a gift of $50 to student scholarships, study abroad or athletics, it becomes $100,” Turner said. “This is a great opportunity to double your impact on this university, and I hope you will all join me in supporting Elon and spreading the word about this exciting match.

“Thank you to Elon parents Donna and Tom Jarecki for their incredible generosity!”

A mobile-friendly #ElonDay website will be updated throughout the day to include a total of Elon Day gifts in real-time, a live list of donors and interactive leaderboards displaying the academic schools, campus funds and athletic programs receiving support. Gifts of all sizes and designations will count toward the total given during the campaign.

On-campus events include a Student Activities and Department of Athletics-sponsored student tailgate on Bank of America Drive from 3-5 p.m., the senior class giving committee’s "A Toast for Elon" at 9 p.m. in McKinnon Hall, and an #ElonDay celebration in the Moseley Center at 10 p.m. with activities ranging from photo booths and a Skee-Ball competition.

Alumni chapters and clubs will also be holding #ElonDay events in more than 30 locations across the country and in London.

John H. Barnhill ’92, assistant vice president of University Advancement, said College Coffee was a natural choice for beginning the day of celebration.

“This is one of the longest-standing gatherings in our community,” he said at College Coffee. “What better way to kick off #ElonDay than with this tradition? It will impress on students the idea that the whole Elon community gives back every year – and that we’re able to reach new heights today by standing on the shoulder of those who have come before us.”

Eric Townsend,
3/8/2016 12:15 PM