UofM Senior Class Gift Campaign Totals Up by $2,000 and 100 Donors

August 28, 2017 - In 2015, philanthropists George and Betty Johnson created a new "class project" for graduating seniors at the University of Memphis. Seniors were encouraged to donate money to support a scholarship so a deserving student could attend the UofM. The project began as a yearly senior class luncheon held each spring at both the main campus and UofM Lambuth campus to celebrate the accomplishments of seniors.

Three years later, the Senior Class Gift Campaign is enjoying exceptional success and has grown to an entire week of events. This year's students raised $7,776 compared to $5,821 in 2016, a 33 percent increase. The number of student donors rose from 376 last year to 469 in 2017, a 25 percent jump. Students made their donations during events such as Wieners for Seniors, Careers Day and Play with a Puppy Day. Those who donated in honor of their graduation year received a Senior Class Gift stole to wear at graduation.
The Senior Class Gift Campaign was established to get students started on the process of giving back to the University while they are still in school. "Betty and I are thrilled to be assisting the senior classes in this program of awarding scholarships to incoming freshmen," said George. "It has been extremely encouraging to see the increased participation by our senior classes from one year to the next. We feel that the students' involvement is due to the fact that, as seniors, they are well aware of the economic benefit of scholarships. Giving back by future and current alumni is the lifeblood of the University."

Jasmine Sankhon, a senior anthropology major, said, "The Senior Class Gift Campaign gave me the opportunity to make my last contribution as a UofM student and my first gift as a UofM alumna. I was able to give a deserving incoming freshman the opportunity to experience college without some of the stresses that come with paying for tuition. The best part about giving to the Senior Class Gift is the pleasure of seeing the recipients of the scholarship at the luncheon. It is very fulfilling to hear from the recipients of your gift."


Gabrielle Maxey