Employee Giving Participation Rises for Both Faculty and Staff

Tour group views all-terrain vehicle with mannequin in the driver's seat, for safety research
A Philanthropy Spotlight Tour in May took employee donors to the Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety, where topics included research dealing with all-terrain vehicles. (Jenni Dingeldein/UC Davis)

Quick Summary

  • Participation rate exceeds 10% among full-timers
  • April’s Employee Giving Month total tops $235,000
  • Perks of giving include ice cream and spotlight tours

More than 10% of the 22,950 full-time faculty and staff have donated to UC Davis to date in the 2022-23 fiscal year. This participation rate is a significant jump from last year, when 8% of full-time employees donated. In particular, the rise in full-time faculty participation stands out with a 4-percentage-point increase from the previous fiscal year (8% in 2021-22 to 12% in 2022-23).

“This is the first time since we started tracking that the percentage of faculty donating to UC Davis outpaced the percentage of staff,” said Jenni Dingeldein, who runs the Employee Giving Program and serves as director of development for philanthropy programs in the Office of Development and Alumni Relations. “Higher rates of participation from all employees make a dramatic difference by amplifying the voice employees have to shape, mold and support the UC Davis community.”

One of the largest drivers of employee participation is April’s Employee Giving Month, when nearly 2,000 faculty and staff from across UC Davis and UC Davis Health donated more than $235,000.

Employees in group photo
Employee donors in Development and Alumni Relations employees celebrate Employee Giving Month in April. (Jenni Dingeldein/UC Davis)

The big give

Employee Giving Month includes Give Day, the biggest fundraising event of the year for all of UC Davis, held in conjunction with Picnic Day. This year’s Give Day (April 14-15) raised nearly $3.4 million. Showing their tremendous dedication and commitment, more than 650 UC Davis and UC Davis Health faculty and staff donated.

The boards of the Emeriti and Retirees associations issued a $12,800 Give Day challenge to assist the Aggie Compass Housing Support Fund, which helps students find safe and stable housing through the Aggie Compass Basic Needs Center. Their challenge drew gifts totaling more than $45,000.

And the Employee Giving Committee issued a $10,500 challenge that raised $92,042 to support any program at UC Davis or UC Davis Health.

“Employee participation during Employee Giving Month and Give Day sets the tone for the rest of the UC Davis community,” said Shaun Keister, vice chancellor of Development and Alumni Relations. “When faculty and staff show their support and commitment to creating a brighter future for the university, they inspire the rest of the community to dig deep and go that extra mile.”

Patty Covington Fuller headshot, UC Davis administration
Patty Covington Fleming

I am in awe of what we do at UC Davis and UC Davis Health! We have amazing faculty, staff, and students who work hard every day to make a difference. — Patty Covington Fleming, senior executive recruitment partner, executive programs and recruitment, and member of the Employee Giving Committee

Patty Covington Fleming, senior executive recruitment partner with executive programs and recruitment, a member of the Employee Giving Committee, said employee donors have an opportunity to make a difference in areas they feel connected to.

“I encourage employees to do a bit of exploration find out what is happening at UC Davis and UC Davis Health,” she said. “Read Dateline, attend campus events, meet with students, faculty and staff. Find an area of interest and give to that area. It’s meaningful to the donor and so impactful to the recipients.”

Perks of participation

When employees give to UC Davis, whether it’s a one-time gift or monthly payroll deduction, they are automatically enrolled in the Employee Giving Program. The program includes invitations to events like Philanthropy Spotlight Tours, unique behind-the-scenes looks at programs that make our campus special, and ice cream socials with Chancellor Gary S. May.

“I had the opportunity to connect with Chancellor May at our Ice Cream Social for employee donors last October,” Covington Fleming said. “When I spoke with him about the Staff Emergency Fund, Chancellor May did not hesitate to make a significant contribution.”

Covington Fleming encourages all employees to get involved in any way they can: “Consider making a gift to an area that you are passionate about. Whether it’s animals, athletics, DEI, climate change, medicine we are doing work in support of these areas and so many more.”

Bryan Anthony is a senior writer for the Annual and Special Gifts Program in the Office of Development and Alumni Relations, and can be reached by email or phone, 530-754-0482.

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