UST donors 'Give to the Max' for 24 hours

Donors flocked to the St. Thomas page on on Give to the Max Day, Tuesday, Nov. 17, to participate in an online giving program. For one day only, online contributions to nonprofits that signed up at the site were eligible for a portion of $500,000 in matching funds.

St. Thomas received contributions from 146 donors totaling more than $43,000 in the 24-hour period. All transaction costs were waived for that period of time, so St. Thomas will receive 100 percent of the gifts dedicated to the university, as well as $1,338 as its share of the matching funds.

“We were very pleased and encouraged by the turnout of donors,” said Steve Hoeppner, executive director of development at St. Thomas. “Their quick response to this opportunity is the reason we were so successful.”

Donors were able to designate their gifts and also leave comments about the institution. Some praised St. Thomas’ quality of education, some spotlighted particular academic programs, and one even wished the Tommie football team good luck as it entered the NCAA Division III playoffs last weekend.

This is the first time that St. Thomas has participated in a fundraising effort sponsored by; however, online giving is a staple of the university’s development efforts and is available for those interested in supporting the Opening Doors capital campaign, which is in progress.

Since the giving opportunity was online, the promotion of St. Thomas’ participation followed suit: An e-postcard was sent; a graphic was added to the university and capital-campaign home pages on the Web; and a story was distributed through Bulletin Today. also connects to the social networking site Facebook, and promotional messages were sent out to various St. Thomas constituencies.