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12/17/2012

Winthrop Giving Challenge Raises More Than $100K to Support Scholarships

Quick Facts

 The Winthrop Chimney Challenge, a holiday-themed giving challenge, has raised more than $100,000 to support the Winthrop Fund, an unrestricted fund that provides student scholarships.
 The holiday-themed challenge, which began at midnight Tuesday, Dec. 11, and ended at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 13, garnered 390 gifts – well beyond the challenge goal of 300.

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ROCK HILL, S.C. - An outpouring of gifts from Winthrop alumni and supporters has made December a season to be jolly, indeed – especially for the university’s students.

The Winthrop Chimney Challenge, a holiday-themed giving challenge, has raised more than $100,000 to support the Winthrop Fund, an unrestricted fund that provides student scholarships. The holiday-themed challenge, which began at midnight Tuesday, Dec. 11, and ended at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 13, garnered 390 gifts – well beyond the challenge goal of 300.

The challenge, issued by an anonymous couple, was straightforward: Secure 300 gifts to the Winthrop Fund in three days. The potential reward? $50,000 for the Winthrop Fund.

Positive response from donors mid-challenge pushed the gift total to 314 – more than $40,000 – by 1 p.m. Dec. 13. Gifts continued coming in until just before midnight Dec. 13, eventually totaling more than $52,000 in additional gifts to the Winthrop Fund.

A grand total for the Chimney Challenge will not be available until early next week when all gifts postmarked during the challenge have been received. All funds raised will support student scholarships in the 2012-13 academic year.

Kim Keel, vice president for university development and alumni relations at Winthrop, noted that the overwhelming positive response to the challenge illustrates the university’s motto, “Live. Learn. Lead.”

“Through the Chimney Challenge, Winthrop University alums, friends, faculty, and staff have demonstrated their active role in the success of our current students,” said Keel. “Seeing them engage via technology to achieve this unique goal is evidence of ‘Live. Learn. Lead.’ at its finest.”

Teleia Tollison White, assistant vice president for annual giving and operations for Winthrop’s Office of Development, added that the challenge has been “a testament to the amazing Winthrop community.”

“We appreciate everyone responding to this challenge. We were amazed and delighted at how quickly we were able to reach 300 gifts,” said White.

For more information, contact Amanda Stewart, director of program administration, at stewartaj@winthrop.edu or call her at 803/323-4493. To find out more information, or to make a gift to the Winthrop Fund, contact the Office of Development at 803/323-2150.

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