Markie, a maroon and gold mascot shaped as an Internet map marker, walked the grounds of the Tempe campus Thursday to inform students about Mark It Day, an annual philanthropy event that lets anyone leave his or her mark on the school in the form of donations.
These gifts began to arrive electronically at midnight Thursday and will continue until Friday, with people from all over the country donating.
The event aims to unite thousands of students, staff and alumni through the web and collect donations that will specifically benefit academic and extracurricular organizations.
Anyone with access to a computer can participate, so it makes sense that the majority of Mark It Day’s engagement and promotion is maintained through a strong online presence on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter.
Mark It Day, organized by the ASU Foundation, is looking to collect even more money than last year.
Senior Director of Annual Giving for the ASU foundation Shad Hanselman said he is optimistic about the success of this year’s event.
“We’ve had a lot of great early support and a lot of organizations to help other people get on board,” he said.
Hanselman said he believes Mark it Day will exceed the amount of money raised in last year’s fundraiser and credits its online campaign as a key part of successfully reaching its goal.
The event’s goal for 2014 is to raise $76,611. There are still 24 hours left in the fundraising campaign, and 61 percent of the goal has already been met, with more than $46,000 collected.
The first Mark It Day was held last year and brought more than $170,000 in donations to the school, with close to 1,000 donors, setting an ASU record for single-event fundraising.
Mark It Day wants to increase the number of donors from last year and has set a goal of collecting money from 1,250 participants for 2014.
Many generous donors have offered to match donations to specific organizations.
These include big businesses such as Bank of America. An ASU alumni family has pledged to match up to $5,000 in donations to The Sun Devil Family Association. The College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, The Herberger Theatre, The Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College and many more also have donation programs within their departments.
The event won a gold and silver medal in the fundraising category and a bronze medal in the technology category of the 2013 CASE District VII Awards of Excellence, which feature the best organizations in alumni relations, fundraising and special events for institutions in Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Nevada, Northern Mariana Islands and Utah.
Hanselman said he wants more and more people becoming aware about Mark It Day.
“With Markie out on campus, it’s a fun way to get involved,” he said.
Go to Mark it Day’s website for a countdown clock, a running total of dollars raised, and a world map updated live with locations and names of people who are donating.
Reach the reporter at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @mister_jgold