Vice President for the division of Advancement, Charles D. Phlegar, with PRISM students Emily Bookstaver (left) and Kathleen Finn (right) at Pamplin's Giving Day HQ, aka the Pamplin atrium, during Giving Day 2022.
Vice President for the division of Advancement, Charles D. Phlegar, with PRISM students Emily Bookstaver (left) and Kathleen Finn (right) at Pamplin's Giving Day HQ, aka the Pamplin atrium, during Giving Day 2022.

The Pamplin College of Business led all Virginia Tech colleges and units on Giving Day 2022, with 2,314 unique donors giving over $2.5 million in support of the college. This marks the second year in a row that Pamplin has led the university in both unique donors and dollars raised.

The 24-hour window from noon, Feb. 23, through noon, Feb. 24, was Virginia Tech’s fourth Giving Day, and its first with an in-person component since 2019. Over 15,000 Hokie alumni, family, and friends from all 50 states and 29 countries made gifts ranging from $5 to tens of thousands of dollars to provide over $8.4 million in support for our university’s colleges, departments, programs, teams, and student organizations. The number of donors and dollars raised were both Giving Day records for the university.

“Giving Day was, again, a huge success for Pamplin,” said Dean Robert T. Sumichrast. “A special thank you to Mary McVay, who sponsored the Pamplin GBAC Challenge, as well as to all those who made the Pamplin Leaderboard Challenge a reality.”

The Pamplin GBAC Challenge unlocked an additional $100,000 for the Global Business and Analytics Complex when the college surpassed its goal of 2,116 unique donors. The additional GBAC funds were made possible by McVay (ACCT ’78, MBA ’81), one of the project’s biggest champions. McVay pledged the initial $1 million to support the effort when it was first announced and later pledged another $1 million through the McVay Challenge, announced at the March 2021 GBAC groundbreaking.

The Pamplin Leaderboard Challenge unlocked an additional $100,000 in funds to the top 10 Pamplin units (departments, centers, and programs) with the most unique donors on Giving Day. The Pamplin unit with the highest number of unique donors was awarded an additional $20,000, with the remaining funds distributed on a sliding scale based on their leaderboard ranking.

Pamplin’s student-run, faculty-led digital marketing agency, PRISM, topped the Pamplin Leaderboard with 527 donors. The Pamplin College of Business Annual Fund and the Apex Center for Entrepreneurs finished second and third on the board, respectively.

According to Abby Stewart (BIT ’23), director of Virginia Tech business with PRISM, “PRISM has given so much to me, which made it especially important to give back to the organization this year. Our members are truly passionate about their work which made reaching out to fellow Hokies, family members, and friends that much easier.”  

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The Pamplin Leaderboard Challenge was made possible thanks to donations by Tracy Castle-Newman (FIN ’90), Mike Clarke (FIN ’83), Gary Cole (BIT ’92), Brian Cook (’79, MBA ’81), Doug Curling (ACCT ’76, MACCT ’77), Kendley Davenport (MGT ’84), Lynne Doughtie (ACIS ’85), Don Halliwill (ACIS ’90), Jeff Hartman (MGT ’79), Jim Hatch (MACCT ’72), Starlette Johnson (FIN ’85), Mark Krivoruchka (MBA ’81), Carmen Liuzzo (ACIS ’83), Jake Lutz (FIN ’78), Floyd Merryman (MGT ’81), Don Neff (ACIS ’90), Debbie Petrine (MGT ’78), Bridget Ryan-Berman (BUS ’82), Richie Whitt (ACIS ’87), and Chris Xystros (ACCT ’84).

“It was exciting to see such a fun competition between the Pamplin departments and programs,” said Cole, who serves as vice chair for development with the Pamplin Advisory Council (PAC) and was the champion donor kicking off the ten-fold increase in the Leaderboard matching dollars competition with fellow PAC members. “Giving Day is a great opportunity to represent your passion for both Pamplin and Virginia Tech. I’m happy that we were able to play a role in the day’s success.”

In addition to the funds raised on Giving Day, Pamplin also won an additional $17,000 to be shared across the college for leading the university in donors, amount raised, and faculty/staff giving. For reaching its donor goal, all Pamplin departments and Pamplin’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging program will share equally an additional $14,000 of unrestricted funds.

Much of the success of Giving Day 2022, like Giving Day 2021, can be attributed to the use of Giving Day ambassadors who, along with supporting the cause through donations, also spread the message of Giving Day to their network of family and friends via social media and other means. The “You+2” challenge encouraged ambassadors to make a gift and have at least two others within their circle to do the same.

Over 1,000 Giving Day ambassadors helped bring in more than 6,600 gifts, totaling over $800,000.

The excitement of Virginia Tech’s Giving Day 2022 was so great that, shortly before giving closed at noon on Feb. 24, it broke the internet, knocking the Giving Day website offline. Thankfully, the problem was quickly fixed, and Giving Day was extended to midnight, Feb. 24.

Elizabeth Mitchell, assistant dean of advancement with Pamplin, attributed the success of Giving Day 2022 to the idea of “Hokies helping Hokies” to give back to the college and the university.

“It was a great team effort by the entire Pamplin community to promote Giving Day,” said Mitchell. “Thank you all who helped make this a great success and for helping to build a stronger Pamplin College of Business.”