Each University of Georgia graduating class contributes a gift to the university to mark their legacy on campus for generations of students to come, and the Class of 2023 has taken this tradition to new levels.
The 2023 graduating class set a record when 3,377 of them—more than any other year—contributed over $112,000 through Senior Signature, the university’s class gift program that has been in place since 1991. Undergraduate, graduate and professional students were invited to participate in the campaign.
“I am so proud of my fellow members of the Class of 2023,” said Madison Polk, outgoing president of the UGA Student Alumni Council and the 2022 Homecoming Queen. “Even in a challenging economic environment, the students at UGA right now are driven by their passions and are committed to leaving things better than they found them.”
The minimum Senior Signature donation is $30 and is an opportunity for students to learn how financial support can be designated to funds across campus in which students are interested. Each student donor is invited to direct $20 of their gift to an area of campus that enhanced their student experience. This year, students contributed to more than 500 funds at UGA.
The remaining $10 of a student’s donation is pooled with peer gifts to provide grant funding to a student organization. Each student donor gets to vote on which organization receives the financial support to create awareness of philanthropic needs on campus. This year, student donors selected Period Project at UGA to receive the grant during the upcoming academic year to support its student-led initiatives.
In addition to supporting future generations of Bulldogs, student donors’ names will be engraved on the Class of 2023 plaque in Tate Plaza, just steps away from Sanford Stadium, Tate Student Center and Memorial Hall. The plaque will be installed ahead of Spring Commencement.
Record student giving
Polk and fellow members of the UGA Student Alumni Council engage their peers throughout the year to connect with alumni, to participate in campus traditions that enhance the student experience—and to give back philanthropically to UGA. Their efforts, which include hosting fundraising events, peer-to-peer education via social media and email, and tabling on campus during the 2022-2023 academic year, resulted in record levels of overall student giving to the university. More than 4,600 students contributed over $400,000 to support the university now and for generations to come.
“It’s not just seniors giving back,” said Polk. “Students even in their first years on campus contributed through initiatives such as Beat Week, Dawg Day of Giving, and other special fundraising campaigns. Paying it forward is a hallmark of being a Georgia Bulldog.”
To learn more about Senior Signature, go to alumni.uga.edu/seniorsignature.