This year's graduating class, our Centennial Class, is working to bring back an important Arizona Law tradition -- the class gift.
The class gift tradition has been a part of Arizona Law for many years but was elevated to a new level by the Class of 2001. The Class of 2001 started a full-fledged and systematic campaign enlisting the help of Arizona Law stalwarts Jim Rogers ('62) and George Rountree ('60).
The 2001 class achieved 70% class participation and raised over $65,000 in cash and pledges.
Following their lead, every class from 2001 to 2009 participated in a class gift campaign, and each year the graduating students challenged themselves to raise more than the class before and to achieve a higher level of participation. The class of 2003 reached an all-time high of 80% participation in their class gift campaign.
Unfortunately, with the economic downturn that we all experienced in 2009 and 2010, the Class Gift program fell by the wayside. The last two graduating classes began to rebuild the legacy established by prior classes by participating in small but important Class Gift campaigns. This year's class has challenged itself to return the Class Gift program to its glory days.
The Centennial Class has chosen to leave a memorable legacy at Arizona Law through Careers for Cats, a fellowship fund that will support future law students' job-search related expenses.
This year's Class Gift Committee called on the entire student body in a voting process that ultimately selected employment from three potential fundraising campaigns as the foremost priority for the College and future generations of law students. With over 200 votes, the energetic campaign voting process involved those who will be most impacted by the Centennial Class Gift and got the student community talking about the critical importance of philanthropy.
With the goal of raising $100,000 from at least 100 members of the class and other supporters, Careers for Cats aims to provide 100 current and future law students with $1,000 fellowships to assist with job-search related expenses such as travel and interview preparation.
Two gifts were made at the Annual LCA dinner in response to a call from Centennial Class Gift Committee member Lauren Talkington ('15). In addition to Lauren, the hard working 2015 Class Gift Committee members (pictured at right) are 3L students Tony Caldwell, Aaron Gbenwonyo, Heather Goodwin, Tristany Leikem, Avaleen Liu, and Rebecca Mascot.
The Committee will continue its efforts through graduation on May 16th with the hope of maximum class participation. Students have the opportunity to make a one-time gift at any level or five-year gift pledges.
The campaign is off to a solid early start with 10 donors and $6,100 raised so far. The Class Gift Committee has tremendous gratitude for all of those who have already participated and supported their efforts.
In celebration of 100 years of careers launched at Arizona Law, and as they did at the annual LCA dinner, the Centennial Class is inviting all alumni to participate in its efforts. Your additional support will help them reach their ambitious fundraising goal, encourage philanthropy amongst this newest generation of alumni, and help law students secure employment for years to come.
To participate, please click here and add "Class Gift" to the notes. We will keep track of the graduation years of all alumni contributors and provide you with updates on the leading classes and the leading decades.
If your career has been enhanced in any way by your Arizona Law education, please make a contribution to the Centennial Class campaign. Let's show the students that the entire alumni community is behind them and their efforts.