New Record Set on Third Annual Giving Day

Students pose with Mr. Commodore at this year's Anchor Down Day prior to Giving Day. Photo by Susan Urmy
Students pose with Mr. Commodore at this year’s Anchor Down Day prior to Giving Day. Photo by Susan Urmy

More than 7,000 members of the Vanderbilt community came together to raise nearly $6 million for the university and its students on the third annual Vanderbilt Giving Day, setting a new record for giving participation in 24 hours.

The Giving Day totals include an $800,000 challenge gift that was unlocked when the goal of 6,300 overall donors was met and a $200,000 challenge gift that was secured when the goal of 1,000 G.O.L.D. (Graduates Of the Last Decade) donors was met.

“We are so thankful for the tremendous show of support from our alumni and friends on this important day,” says Melinda Phillips, executive director of annual giving. “Giving Day calls upon many thousands of donors to respond to a call to action and invest in the Vanderbilt mission. A result like this shows the power of coming together for a common purpose.”

Giving Day 2018 built on the success of last year’s 24-hour giving campaign, bringing in more than twice as much in gifts than in 2017. Gifts will be put to use immediately to fund scholarships, career development, study-abroad opportunities and athletic programs.

Additionally, 1,100 alumni and friends spread the #give4thegold spirit by serving as Giving Day ambassadors, and hundreds of alumni and friends showed their pride on social media by sharing their reasons for giving.

“I am so proud to be part of a Vanderbilt family that recognizes the value of higher education and invests in its success,” says Sara Tabor Simonds, BS’08, MAcc’09, G.O.L.D. Council president. “Today and every day, I’m thankful to be a Commodore.”

To learn more about Giving Day results, visit