Following the conclusion of the Giant Steps Campaign, Wabash College celebrated another extraordinary fiscal year marked by historic levels of philanthropic generosity.
More than $3.8 million was donated in the 2022-23 fiscal year to the College’s Annual Fund. This is the second-highest Annual Fund total in the institution’s 191-year history.
The Annual Fund, which is made up of unrestricted support and helps deliver the College’s signature liberal arts experience to students every year, included gifts from 5,506 alumni, students, faculty, staff, and friends.
For perspective, this Annual Fund total provides the equivalent of 79 full-tuition scholarships, summer research and internship opportunities for 100% of the student body, or room and board expenses for 313 students.
“At a time when the public no longer trusts long-standing institutions, it is simply remarkable that Wabash’s alumni and friends care so deeply about our College – they have trust in the promise of a holistic liberal arts education delivered our faculty and staff,” said President Scott Feller. “This should send a powerful message to prospective students and their families about the strength of the relationships formed at Wabash that endure across generations.”
Wabash alumni were generous with their support, and reached a 40% participation rate for the 10th consecutive year — a mark that is not only among the best in all of higher education, but positions the College to maintain its ranking among top alumni networks.
Alumni who made gifts represented 75 consecutive classes from 1948 to 2023. The Class of 1991 led all classes with 106 total donors, followed by the Classes of 2016 (89), 2015 (88), 2003 (86), and 1983 (83) rounding out the top five.
The Annual Fund’s success comes on the tail of a record-setting, 10th-annual Day of Giving on April 19, when more than 3,500 donors gave $1.67 million to the College.
In a 24-hour fundraising effort to support current students, the Wabash community broke records including the total amount raised and the average amount raised per student. The Day of Giving raised $2,107 per student — nearly $400 more than last year.
In its 10-year Day of Giving history, Wabash has raised $10,338,765 from 47,510 gifts.
“When Wabash men join together, they achieve beyond their most ambitious expectations,” said Kevin Andrews ’10, Director of Annual Giving. “The same holds true for our Wabash community who — driven by the belief that every contribution, big or small, can play a vital role in making a difference — came together in record-setting ways to shape a brighter future for our students and the world they impact.”
The Annual Fund total contributes to the Giant Steps Campaign, the largest fundraising campaign in Wabash’s history, which ran from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2023.
The original goal of $225 million was surpassed with more than 12,000 donors contributing $250 million in total to the campaign in support of Wabash.
“The way alumni and friends took their own giant steps with their generous support over the last six years to exceed the campaign goal is a testament to their steadfast belief in our enduring mission to educate men to think critically, act responsibly, lead effectively, and live humanely,” said Joe Klen ’97, Senior Associate Dean for College Advancement. “This philanthropic impact has generated an undeniable momentum for Wabash and has set the College on an enviable path toward our bicentennial in 2032.”
Giant Steps is focused on strengthening opportunities for Wabash students and faculty through investment in endowed funds, the Annual Fund, and capital projects.
More than 100 new endowed funds were created to establish scholarships, academic department and program funds, and new faculty professorships and chairs.
Gifts from the Giant Steps campaign have also supported: WabashX initiatives (Center for Innovation, Business, and Entrepreneurship, Wabash Democracy and Public Discourse, and Global Health Initiative); Malcolm X Institute of Black Studies; and Stephenson Institute for Classical Liberalism; the Wabash Liberal Arts Immersion Program (WLAIP); and the President's Distinguished Speaker Series.
The Wabash community will celebrate the extraordinary generosity of benefactors and the impact of the campaign the weekend of October 6-7 on campus. For additional event information and lodging details, visit www.wabash.edu/agiantmoment.