On Feb. 14, 2019, Olivet alumni, friends, faculty and staff came together to support Olivet Gives, the College’s second annual giving campaign.
The campaign also included a Class Spirit Challenge, a friendly competition in which classes from each decade went head-to-head with classes from the other decades. The classes of the 2000s were this year’s Class Spirit Champions, with the 1980s and 2010s close behind.
During the day, the College posted several videos sharing different aspects of Olivet College. The videos ranged from demonstrations with the wrestling team to a unique journey through time with mascots Clyde and Haley.
Senior Brian Freiberger spent the afternoon making thank-you calls to donors. He especially enjoyed connecting with one alumnae.
“The caller was so thankful and energetic and was just telling me how much she comes to campus —three or four times a year,” Brian said. “It makes me grateful as a senior. I want to come back here when I’m an alum to see things and participate.”
Junior Jillian Johnson also enjoyed contributing to Olivet Gives as a student caller.
“It’s nice to see where money is coming from,” she said. “I think a lot of times we hear we’re getting donors but we don’t see it. It makes me feel like I should give back when I graduate, and it means that people are investing in our futures.”
Carol Flanigan, senior director of annual giving and donor services, played a key role in planning Olivet Gives. She witnessed how alumni from all ages and walks of life came together for this special day.
“We had a lot of alumni who hadn’t given back to Olivet in decades — or had never made a gift before — who took the opportunity to support current students,” Carol said. “We had alumni from as far back as the 1940s and as recent as last year make gifts. It really speaks to how much being a Comet means to alumni across generations, and it’s gratifying to see so many alumni come out in full force to make that experience available to students today.”
Dana Gill ’11, assistant director of annual giving, also helped plan the event. To her, Olivet Gives is more than a giving campaign; it’s an opportunity for OC to celebrate the future of its students.
“Olivet Gives is such a special celebration of all that Olivet College represents,” Dana said. “It is a time when alumni, friends, faculty, staff and students join together and take responsibility for the future of OC and all who step foot on campus. Each gift represents the future students who will be provided with the opportunity to learn, develop themselves and eventually take their part in the world. After all, the gift of education is one of the greatest gifts out there!”
Among this year’s donors, one group stood out above the rest.
“We had really amazing partners on campus and off, but the Sigma Betas really made Olivet Gives exciting this year,” Carol said. “They rallied their sisters and were able to raise over $1,500 for their house here on campus. They kept the energy high throughout the day, and I hope that next year we’ll continue the trend of working with Greek societies and other organizations.”
Loren Burzycki ’72 was more than happy to support Sigma Beta, stating that many of his friends at Olivet were Sigma Beta women and his daughter is one of them herself. He reflects on his time at Olivet as a meaningful experience that shaped his life.
“Olivet gave me a fabulous opportunity when I needed it the most,” Loren said. “I not only received a great education but I experienced personal growth that was very beneficial in my professional career. Participating in a function like Olivet Gives allows me to give support to programs that are very important to Olivet and Olivet’s future developing professionals. Olivet is one of the places that I like to support. I hate to think what my life would have been like without the Olivet experience.”
It’s not too late to donate! Comets need your support year-round. If you didn’t have the chance to participate in Olivet Gives, visit www.olivetcollege.edu/give to make your gift today.
For more information about Olivet College, contact the Office of Admissions at 800.456.7189 or email@example.com.