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School of Nursing is a Leader in UCI's Inaugural Giving Day

UCI’s first-ever Giving Day, held April 12, raised $1.4 million within 24 hours – exceeding its goal of $1 million – to support students, research and innovative programs across campus. The Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing took the lead among health science programs for securing the highest number of gifts and surpassed any other program on campus with the number of faculty involved.

“We are proud to have contributed in a significant way to this innovative fundraising effort,” said Dean Adey Nyamathi. “As an official school, we are just getting underway. It’s encouraging to see our alumni, staff and faculty pull together so quickly and so effectively in the name of giving.” 

Ferrees and Sonia

Caption: The largest gift received by the nursing school during the inagural Giving Day came from nursing school faculty and from Leadership Council Executive Vice-Chair Dick Ferree pictured here with his wife, Coradee Ferree (far right), and Sonia Sedano, the 2017 Leslie and Ferree Compassionate Award Scholarship Recipient.  School received 60 gifts totaling $4,746, with active participation from alumni, faculty and friends.  The effort was led by ambassadors Jeffrey Vu, BS ’09, MS ’14, RN, PHN, FNP-BC, CCRN; Assistant Clinical Professor Beth Haney; and, Leadership Council member Mary Ann Gaido.

“The largest gifts of the day came from school of nursing faculty as well as Leadership Council Executive Vice-Chair Dick Ferree. Dick has been a loyal benefactor for the nursing school and a champion of several philanthropic efforts.  This most recent gift is one of many he has given in support of our school,” said Nyamathi. 

Overall, the inaugural Giving Day generated donations from more than 1,600 benefactors in over 30 states and nine countries. A large portion of the gifts came from UCI alumni.

In recent years, 24-hour online “giving days” have grown in popularity within the UC system. Not only do they encourage philanthropy in a fun and competitive way, but they also increase alumni participation and help offset the limitations of state and federal support.

The strategic plan UCI released last year aims to make the university more self-sustaining by promoting a culture of philanthropy on campus, instilling an “Anteaters for life” ethos through campaigns like Giving Day, and making fundraising central to academic planning and leadership.