A joyful privilege—that is the best way to sum up our experiences serving as co-chairs of the Game Changers: Inspiring Leaders to Transform the World campaign.
We have had many connections to the college through the years—from our student days to becoming alumni to giving back—but the last five years have been filled with the most joy.
As grateful alumni, when alma mater asks something of us, we want to say “yes.” We want to step up for the place that helped us become the people we are today. But how were they sure we were the right ones to take on such an important volunteer role for Davidson? It is easy to feel unworthy … or unsure … or ill-prepared. But we wanted to be helpful, so we said yes.
Through the campaign, we connected with alumni in every corner of the country. We traveled with students and faculty who shared anecdotes about the incredible opportunities and experiences taking place every day on and off campus. They told stories about scholarships changing their lives. They walked audiences through internship experiences that helped uncover new passions. They demonstrated the faculty-student relationships that truly set a Davidson education apart from the competition.
We attended many (many!) events that on paper seemed like repeats of one another; but in each city, we sat in awe of the Davidson community—the Davidson people. The stories never get old. Davidson is a special place, no question, and we were given front row seats to people’s lives and the way they were deeply transformed throughout this campaign.
And the outcomes—WOW. There are hardly words to express what this campaign has done for the Davidson of today and the Davidson of the future. Think about every time you get an email or a print piece in the mail that asks you for support. It is easy to set it aside or hit “delete” because you can take care of it some other time. It’s just one more message in an already overflowing mailbox or inbox.
What’s not always easy to see behind those requests is a student who has Davidson first on his or her college list, but to whom the cost feels insurmountable. It’s a Davidson student who has never left the country but who knows an experience abroad would open so many new doors. It’s a student who needs an internship to further prepare for a career, but the perfect opportunity is unpaid. This campaign was filled with answers to these needs.
Thank you. Your gifts allowed these students to say yes. Yes to coming to Davidson, yes to traveling, yes to career opportunities and yes to so many more life-changing things. What started as an email or a mail piece or a conversation, yielded a student more completely prepared to lead a life of leadership and service. Can you think of anything our world needs more than a curious, creative Davidson graduate?
You may have read some of the stories about Davidson College Game Changers throughout the last five years—true trailblazers who have changed lives in countless ways. Every person who made a gift during the campaign has made a difference, too.
Thank you for giving us the privilege to serve during this monumental campaign, and thank you for making it the greatest fundraising success in college history. As we look ahead, you can be assured that future successes will be built on the shoulders of the people who made this campaign happen, because it’s not just about reaching a goal and celebrating exceptional totals: It’s about saying yes to alma mater and allowing students to say yes to their futures.
John McCartney ’74 and Alison Hall Mauzé ’84 co-chaired the Game Changers: Inspiring Leaders to Transform the World campaign.