Pitt-Bradford is issuing a challenge to its alumni to give to their alma mater during the 2017 fiscal year.
A gift of $100,000 for academics has been pledged if more than 700 alumni make a gift by June 30.
The challenge is intended to increase the percentage of alumni who give back from 6.9 percent in 2016 to 8 percent (or 700 alumni) in 2017, bringing it closer to the national average of 8.3 percent. Already 415 alumni have given.
Jill Ballard, executive director of institutional advancement, noted that gifts of any amount count. “In fact, all of the gifts of less than $50 last year added up to nearly $20,000,” she said.
The largest portion of gifts to Pitt-Bradford go toward student financial aid. Last month the financial information website MarketWatch ranked Pitt-Bradford fourth on a list of colleges that devote the highest percentage of their gifts to financial aid.
Among students who apply for financial aid at Pitt-Bradford, 98.9 percent receive assistance through private donor scholarships, institutional financial aid, loans, work-study or undergraduate research funds.
In addition, last month, the website Student Loan Report ranked Pitt-Bradford No. 66 nationwide and first in Pennsylvania as one of the most affordable colleges for incoming freshmen with financial need.
George Repchick '82, supporter of the gift, said he enjoys helping students, whether it is at schools attended by his daughters or his own alma mater.
Dr. Livingston Alexander, president, said, “When it comes to the long-term viability of our campus, financial support by alumni is paramount. Needless to say, we're grateful when loyal and committed alumni choose to support the campus by issuing challenges to other alumni to join them in supporting their alma mater.”
Repchick said that he likes giving through a challenge because it increases participation. This is not his first challenge gift.
In recent years, Repchick has challenged graduating seniors to encourage the senior class members to give to a class scholarship. In 2016, he challenged graduating seniors to have 30 percent of the class make a gift. When the class reached its goal, he contributed the remaining money needed to endow the scholarship.
“Just giving money is easy,” said Repchick, who finished a two-year term as president of the Pitt-Bradford Alumni Association in October. “It is easy to write a check, and more difficult to give time, so I like to encourage involvement and make a connection with students and alumni.”
For more information or to participate in the challenge, visit www.upb.pitt.edu/giving or contact Ballard at 814-362-5091 or firstname.lastname@example.org.