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UAlbany Class of 2011 Gift Provides Unprecedented $35,000 for Student Initiatives

ALBANY, N.Y. (June 27, 2011) -- University at Albany students, parents, faculty, staff and community members have raised more than $35,000 through the Class of 2011/UAlbany Unite initiative, the largest in the University's history.

Breaking with the traditional model of supporting a single project, the UAlbany Unite campaign brought a new level of interactivity as students waged a friendly competition to support a variety of campus-based initiatives. Student groups submitted videos highlighting their organization’s endeavors, and then worked to promote their group by getting friends and family to make a donation.

"We wanted to make it a creative experience and also teach students about philanthropy first hand," said UAlbany Vice President for University Development Fardin Sanai. "Students experienced not only what it's like to donate to a cause, but were able to learn about the importance of supporting and promoting their organization as well as the University."

More than 600 current students, parents, alumni, faculty and staff made contributions totaling more than $17,000. An additional $17,000 was raised in sponsorships, including from University Auxiliary Services (UAS), the University at Albany Student Association (SA), the Alumni Association, The University at Albany Foundation and The Class of 2011 Book Drive. The funds will directly benefit the participating student groups for the 2011-2012 academic year. The project was started in November, 2010, in conjunction with National Philanthropy Day.

The student groups who took part include L'Chaim, Five Quad, Middle Earth, Hillel, the University Equestrian Team, the Ski and Snowboard Club, Women's Self Defense and Fitness (WSDF), Albany Student Television (ATV), Mixed Martial Arts, Women’s Rugby, Albany Running Exchange, Albany Business Leaders Emerging (ABLE), The Sketchy Characters, and D.R.E.A.M.org.

The previous record for a class gift was $33,000 set by the Class of 2009 in support of the Richard Bailey Memorial Scholarship Fund.

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A comprehensive public research university, the University at Albany offers more than 120 undergraduate majors and minors and 125 master's, doctoral, and graduate certificate programs. UAlbany is a leader among all New York State colleges and universities in such diverse fields as atmospheric and environmental sciences, business, criminal justice, emergency preparedness, engineering and applied sciences, informatics, public administration, social welfare, and sociology taught by an extensive roster of faculty experts. It also offers expanded academic and research opportunities for students through an affiliation with Albany Law School. With a curriculum enhanced by 600 study-abroad opportunities, UAlbany launches great careers.