Class of 2019 gives back with record-breaking support for the university

The university's newest alumni have left their mark on Elon through a gift of more than $24,500.

More than 780 members of the Class of 2019 took part in the Elon tradition of making their senior class gift, breaking the record for the number of senior donors who made their gift. This year's graduating class ended the year with 56 percent participation – giving over $24,500 back to Elon.

The Class of 2019 celebrate Commencement on May 24, 2019.
Seniors were encouraged to make a gift to the area of Elon that made the biggest impact on their time as students. Students designated their gifts to 100 different areas of campus – everything from athletics to scholarships to specific majors and departments.

Seniors were invited to various events throughout the year including a kick-off event in the fall, senior photos in Fonville Fountain and the first ever “Senior Fest” – a week of celebrating the members ​of the Class of 2019. Many of these events were hosted by the Senior Class Giving Committee.

Senior class donors splash in Fonville Fountain for the perfect photo opportunity.
The Senior Class Giving Committee was chaired by Elizabeth Ainger and Emily Golden, who oversaw student outreach, event planning and stewardship initiatives throughout the year. Members of the committee worked to educate their peers on the value of alumni donations and encouraged their classmates to invest in the future of Elon.

The academic year ended with the $20K – Give it Away! Challenge announced to the class on May 21. The challenge, made possible by parents Jen and Trustee Dave Porter P’19, encouraged seniors to make a gift before Commencement on May 24.

Lara Yeast '19 with Brian Feeley '03, Senior Director of Alumni Engagement and Annual Giving (L) and John Barnhill '92, Associate Vice President for University Advancement (R).
The announcement of the challenge stated that one randomly selected senior class donor would be able to decide where $20,000 would go at Elon. In addition, any gifts made during the $20K – Give it Away! Challenge were matched dollar for dollar by the Porters.

Lara Yeast ‘19 was selected and decided to evenly split the $20K between the Center for Organizational Analytics and the Department of Sport Management.

“I chose to make my senior class gift mainly because of how thankful I am to the school and community,” Lara stated. “I want to be able to give back to the place that shaped my life and career. Elon gave me​so much more than I will ever be able to repay. Whether that was learning experiences, lifelong mentors and friends, my Elon experience is something I am extremely thankful for.”

The Class of 2019 process on the morning of Commencement.
Every gift made by the Class of 2019 counts toward Elon LEADS: Our University Campaign. Through this campaign, Elon aims to raise $250 million to invest in scholarships for graduates the world needs, engaged learning, faculty and staff mentors who matter and Elon's iconic learning environment.

All Class of 2019 donors are now members of The 1889 Society – Elon’s loyal donor society and they can renew membership each year by making an annual gift to Elon.

For a full list of senior donors, please visit the Senior Class Giving website: