Campus News

'One Day for UK' raises more than $1.9 million with support from 3,000+ donors

The annual event allows the Wildcat community to help carry out the university’s mission and ensure brighter futures throughout the Commonwealth and beyond. Arden Barnes | UK Photo

LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 24, 2024) — More than 50 colleges, programs and causes at the University of Kentucky once again participated in “One Day for UK,” the sixth-annual 24-hour university-wide giving day. More than 3,000 donors contributed 4,006 gifts totaling $1,960,556, raising the combined six-year total to more than $12.5 million.  

When the Big Blue Nation rallies, our collective efforts create an unstoppable wave of positivity for our students — we’re all in this together, shaping tomorrow side by side,” said Jake Lemon, UK vice president for philanthropy and alumni engagement. “I'm truly astounded by the ongoing support from our alumni, friends, faculty, staff, parents and students who pour their hearts into making ‘One Day for UK’ a phenomenal success.” 

Pledged gifts from across the county, combined with a healthy dose of friendly competition among groups, generated excitement for the crowdfunding campaign. The areas receiving the most contributions in various leaderboard challenges received additional funds supporting their students. 

The Stanley and Karen Pigman College of Engineering finished atop the “Large College Leaderboard,” followed by the College of Arts and Sciences. The College of Fine Arts claimed the “Medium College Leaderboard,” while the J. David Rosenberg College of Law secured second place. In the “Small College and School Leaderboard” category, the College of Public Health edged out the Lewis Honors College. 

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute won the “Large Programs + Centers Leaderboard.” The Office of LGBTQ* Resources took first place on the “Small Programs + Centers Leaderboard.”  

The Chellgren Center received an extra $1,865 thanks to a benefactor making the 1,865th gift of the day. A University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research donor kick-started the day by winning the First Gift of the Day challenge, securing an extra $1,000 for the center. Likewise, the College of Communication and Information won the Last Gift of the Day challenge with a gift from a supporter just before midnight, securing an extra $1,000 for the college. 

Power Hours” throughout the day helped boost totals for several departments. The Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence rallied donors during the 7 a.m. Power Hour challenge, receiving an extra $1,000. Pigman College of Engineering added $1,000 to their total during the noon Power Hour, while the Sweetheart Majorettes received the same amount during the 8 p.m. challenge. 

A list of all the challenge winners can be found on the One Day for UK website. 

The enthusiastic response from the UK community to ‘One Day for UK’ demonstrates a strong commitment to furthering the university's mission of providing quality education and opportunities for our students,” said Director of Annual Giving Andrew Palmer. “It's truly rewarding to see such an engaged and generous group reaffirm their support for the university. Every contribution, big or small, makes a tangible impact on the future of UK.” 

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.