December Campaign Raises more Than 500k for Education Programs, Projects

The announcement arrived in late January and it was good news—La Sierra University had exceeded its December Giving Day and end-of-year fundraising goal by more than half and surpassed the previous year's inaugural Giving Day tally by more than $100,000.

The annual event in early December is organized through the Office of Advancement and offers campus departments the opportunity to promote programs and projects for donor support during a day-long campaign. Donations are accepted online via MobileCause, with contributions taken any time following the announcement of the campaign and through the end of December.

The white-domed Barnard Observatory is situated behind the Visual Art Center on the slope of Mount Two Bit.
The white-domed Barnard Observatory is situated behind the Visual Art Center on the slope of Mount Two Bit.

This year's second Giving Day campaign aimed for $250,000 to support initiatives in 13 departments and facilities. But by the end of December, $559,571 had been contributed by approximately 440 donors, who submitted 499 donations.

“We are so grateful to all who donated, who came through at a level we did not expect—and during a relentless COVID-19 pandemic that has made life harder for everyone,” said Vice President for Advancement Norman Yergen. “We are deeply honored and blessed and thank God for his provision through all those who contributed. Their gifts will greatly benefit our students, our campus, and our community and will produce positive impacts that will be experienced for years to come. We express our deepest thanks to you all.”

The departments of art and design, athletics, music, health and exercise science, psychology, and social work as well as the Zapara School of Business, the School of Education, the H.M.S. Richards Divinity School, the Sciences Advisory Board, the university museum, and the Center for Near Eastern Archaeology sought donor consideration during the campaign. The archaeology center garnered the highest level of support with more than $52,000 raised for its programming. The Sciences Advisory Board raised nearly $44,000 for renovations to the Barnard Observatory, allowing them to achieve their overall goal of $130,000 and begin planning updates to the aging astronomical research structure.

Annual Fund and Advancement Communications Director Kristine Barker, who leads the Giving Day initiative, was surprised by the campaign’s final tally. “I am not going to lie; I was pretty shocked. I placed the goal down lower this [second] year since sometimes there is a lot of hype for the first year of anything new,” she said. “But wow, I am so thankful for everyone who was a part of this and donors who love and support La Sierra.”


By Darla Martin Tucker

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