One gift every 15 seconds for 24 hours—that’s the breakdown of what Jackrabbits in all 50 states and across 19 countries accomplished together as one Sept. 10 during One Day for STATE. The SDSU Foundation’s fourth annual giving day celebrated all it means to be part of the Jackrabbits family and the impact that can be made through private gifts.
In 24 hours, 4,888 donors united to raise $1,617,648 from 5,656 gifts to transform lives at SDSU, supporting funds for more than 110 different causes, including scholarships, research, academic programming, athletics and many more. One Day for STATE aimed to rally SDSU alumni, donors, friends and current students in support of the university. The total number of donors saw a jump of over 1,100 more than last year’s event. Of the 4,888 donors, 439 identified as faculty and 484 as students, demonstrating the One Day for STATE excitement starts on campus. “We want to give students a connection to the Foundation and introduce them to the idea of philanthropy and this one-day celebration gives us that opportunity,” said Heidi Hopewell, assistant director of loyalty giving.
The celebration continued by bringing the excitement to local Jackrabbits as Jack the Jackrabbit, accompanied by the Hobo Day Committee and the infamous Bummobile, traveled around town. Jack the Jackrabbit’s Journey culminated in a return to the SDSU Foundation for the virtual Yellow and Blue Block Party. Though the fun-filled evening would typically find guests gathered on the Alumni Green in the shadow of the Coughlin Campanile, the virtual event featured all the classics for the party’s lineup: a message from President Dunn, appearances by the Hobo Day Committee, and performances by the cheer squad, the dance team and The Pride of the Dakotas Marching Band. The event was recorded and is available for viewing at the SDSU Foundation’s Facebook page.
Local businesses also played a pivotal role in One Day for STATE. The SDSU Foundation, in addition to campus leadership, enjoyed food services from Midwest Fresh, Craft Fusion and Cottonwood. Daktronics supplied signage for the day’s event, propped on Medary Avenue and spreading the buzz of the day’s events to all who passed by. Blue Sky Technologies donated a prize for one of the leading social ambassadors (a custom set of SDSU beanbag boards) in addition to sponsoring the technology for SDSU-themed virtual trivia as one of the day’s activities; Marco Technologies sponsored One Day for STATE community gift bags the SDSU Foundation staff shared with visitors as they stopped by the Lohr Building. In a year of social distancing and uncertainty, the generosity of these partnerships created ways for Jackrabbits to feel connected.
The success of One Day for STATE would not have been possible without support from the Jackrabbits family, near and far. Whether you gave a gift, donated your time and talents or simply celebrated STATE Sept. 10, you truly made a difference. The celebration starts with one day, but the effects of your generosity will be felt at SDSU year-round. One day. One university. One Jackrabbits family. We are one.
About the SDSU Foundation
Founded in 1946, the Foundation has secured more than $500 million in gifts and commitments for SDSU in the past decade. That success includes It Starts with STATE: A Campaign for South Dakota State University, which raised $255.7 million for students, faculty, facilities, athletics and other university programs from January 2007 to April 2013. The organization is in the leadership phase of the university’s next comprehensive campaign. The Foundation holds more than $252 million in assets, including a $168 million endowment. The Foundation has 45 full-time employees.