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Preparing to Give Back on Fordham’s Inaugural Giving Day


As the University sponsors its first-ever Giving Day campaign, student ambassadors and alumni alike have been taking to University community social media to encourage peers to give back to a Fordham school or program that has meant the most to them.

“Fordham has done a lot for us,” said Emily Lindo, GABELLI ’18, a student ambassador from the Fordham Fund’s Student Philanthropy Committee who is helping to promote the campaign. “We want to be able to share that experience with the next set of students who are coming in. Giving Day is a way to do that.”

Fordham’s inaugural Giving Day, April 5, is a 24-hour fundraising event that encourages students, alumni, parents, and supporters of Fordham to make a monetary gift of any amount to any Fordham school or area. The day’s goal is to engage 1,750 donors in honor of Fordham’s Dodransbicentennial and Faith & Hope financial aid campaign.

“Fordham is helping to change the world one student at a time,” said Elaine Ezrapour, annual giving officer of the Fordham Fund. “By providing these educational opportunities to students, they’re gaining the resources to then go out and make a difference.”

-Bill Loschert, GABELLI ’61, a Trustee Fellow, will contribute $100,000 to support scholarships and financial aid if 1,000 people give;

-Buzz Zaino, FCRH ’65, will contribute $50,000 if 100 or more people make a gift to support the Fordham College at Rose Hill Scholarship Fund.​

-Paolo Santonocito, FCRH ’07, will contribute $5,000 toward scholarships and financial aid if 200 alumni from the Classes of 2007 through 2016 make a gift during the 24-hour period.

-Patricia Dugan-Perlmuth, FCLC ’79, will contribute $75,000 in support of the Ailey/Fordham BFA in Dance program if 30 people support the Denise Jefferson Memorial Scholarship Fund.

Ezrapour said that two anonymous donors will also match all gifts made by members of the Class of 2017 up to $10,000.

In addition to bringing attention to the campaign on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram with the hashtag #FordhamGives, student ambassadors have been sharing their own philanthropic experiences with their classmates.

Student ambassadors from the Fordham Fund’s Student Philanthropy Committee discuss plans for Fordham's first-ever Giving Day.

Student ambassadors from the Fordham Fund’s Student Philanthropy Committee discuss plans for Fordham’s first-ever Giving Day. Photo by Tanisia Morris

“It’s part of the Jesuit philosophy to give back to your local community and people that have given to you,” said Caitlin Sakdalan, a Fordham College at Lincoln Center senior and student ambassador for Giving Day. “Giving back is another way we can help Fordham grow.”

Student ambassadors will be drumming up support and enthusiasm for campaign at the Lowenstein Plaza at the Lincoln Center campus from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and the McGinley walkway at the Rose Hill campus from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. with help from Rameses on Wednesday.

There will be information tables at both locations, as well as refreshments, treats, a photo booth, and Giving Day t-shirts. Students participating in the event will be able to make personal cards for donors. The ambassadors will live stream the results of the fundraiser throughout the day.

While students are encouraged to give gifts of any amount, the committee recognizes that not all students have the financial means to give toward the campaign, Sakdalan said.

“One thing that we always tell students is that it’s never about the dollar amount, but about the actual effort that goes into it,” she said. “If people can’t give, we encourage them to share the campaign and educate others to take action.”

The success of Giving Day relies on participants pushing out the campaign to their networks, organizers said.

“This is an opportunity to rally up support around Fordham,” said Ezrapour. “Getting people engaged in giving back is the ultimate goal.


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