ASU’s Office of Annual Giving will try to raise $73,373 during Mark It Day, an event that will last 37 hours and principally take place Thursday.
The dollar amount was inspired by ASU’s enrollment of 73,373 students, which is a national record for university enrollment numbers, according to the official Mark It Day website.
Shad Hanselman, the senior director of the Office of Annual Giving, said the University will run multiple campaigns to encourage the ASU community to donate Thursday.
All money donated will help fund the philanthropic efforts of the ASU Foundation. Donors will be able to direct their gifts to a specific arm of the Foundation, including the individual schools of the University.
The Office of Annual Giving will also host an event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday on the W. P. Carey School of Business Dean’s Patio, between the Business Administration building and the Business Administration C-Wing.
This event will be catered toward students and will feature giveaways and activities. It will also encourage students to make $10 donations via text message to the ASU Foundation’s scholarship fund.
Hanselman said Mark It Day is about getting people involved in ASU philanthropy in a fun way.
He said the Office of Annual Giving held a smaller event in February 2012 to test market interest in an event like Mark It Day.
“What we found out from (the February event) is that people get really excited about events with a focus and a timeframe,” Hanselman said.
The Office of Annual Giving has created a new ASU mascot to help promote philanthropy and Mark It Day.
Markie the Sunspot is a teardrop-shaped map marker, similar to those used to indicate locations on Google Maps. He’s maroon, with a bright gold sunburst on his center.
Hanselman said Annual Giving will continue to use Markie after Mark It Day, and the office hopes to plan more events with the mascot in the future.
“The idea behind Markie is to help point out all the places at ASU where philanthropy makes a difference,” Hanselman said.
Annual Giving has been promoting Markie for the past month. The office held an iPad Mini raffle once Markie’s Facebook page reached 2,000 followers and has been staging appearances at ASU events, such as the recent Night of the Open Door.
The social media pages have been posting pictures of Markie around campus, including historical photos that have been edited to include the sunspot.
Markie said he has been doing a lot of work to increase people’s awareness of him.
“It’s kind of frustrating, because a lot of people don’t know who I am,” Markie said.
However, he was quick to add that it is still fun to fulfill his duties as sunspot, which include meeting donors, going to events and taking pictures.
Being unknown has its entertainments: Markie said he enjoys catching people off guard and seeing their reactions to him.
Mark It Day will be a typical day for the mascot as he meets and greets students during the Dean’s Patio party.
Students, who are not typically involved with University philanthropy, are the demographic Annual Giving most hopes to reach with Mark It Day.
Jordan Nisenson, a marketing junior and coordinator of the Student Foundation, said it is important for students to get involved with philanthropy to increase their affinity with the University.
An increased affinity will help students feel more pride and happiness about attending ASU, she said.
Mark It Day will offer incentives for students to get involved, Nisenson said.
They don’t have to donate money to be involved.
“Just getting our name out there is a huge part of our philanthropy,” she said.
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