The Darden School of Business and Darden School Foundation received a record $3.5 million in donations from donors during its Annual Fund drive, the school announced today (July 28). This is the highest amount ever raised in the Darden Annual Fund’s 57-year history.
The fund received gifts from alumni, friends, corporations and foundations:
- Total receipts of $3.5 million surpassed the 2010-2011 goal of $3.2 million and represent a 17 percent increase in giving from the previous year.
- Of Darden’s 14,000 alumni, 42 percent made an annual gift to the school. Darden alumni have one of the top three highest annual giving participation rates among the world’s leading business schools. Only Dartmouth’s Tuck School and Yale University’s School of Management have higher rates of giving.
- Of the 54 classes of MBA graduates, 14 reached 50 percent participation or higher, with an additional seven classes just under the 50-percent mark.
The numbers move Darden closer to its goal of 50 percent alumni participation. The school said that an important factor in this year’s Annual Fund drive was Bob Bruner’s reappointment as Darden’s dean for a second, four-year term. Many donors increased their gift in honor of the dean and his strong leadership of the school.
“We are incredibly grateful to the donors, the Darden School Foundation trustees, the class agents, the faculty and our hardworking staff for this tremendous accomplishment,” said Trip Davis, foundation president and senior associate dean for external relations, in a statement.
Darden’s Annual Fund drive is a vital source of support for the school. In 2003, Darden became financially self-sufficient, which means the school relies exclusively on private support and does not receive funds from the University of Virginia or the Commonwealth of Virginia.
“The Darden Annual Fund is critical for the school,” says Davis. “The challenge we face now after beating the historical record is that we must begin again and start raising funds for fiscal year 2012, which runs through June 30, 2012. I am confident that our tight-knit, committed community can keep up the record-breaking pace.”