Class of 2013 Considers Gift

Courtesy of University Advancement

Courtesy of University Advancement

Seniors plan to raise $15,000 towards revamping the Student Center Terrace Stage.


The Class of 2013 Senior Gift Campaign is currently underway with a goal of raising $15,000 to renovate the Student Center Terrace Stage.

The project would create a new awning for the stage, complete with lights, sound equipment and tools necessary to improve this space for music, dance and several other kinds of performances.

This project was determined by a vote from the Class of 2013. Current seniors were notified through email and from their EEE accounts that they could choose from three different projects. Students had the choice of funding a new  maquee sign for the Anteater Recreation Center (ARC), new additions to the Newkirk Alumni Center to make it even more technologically advanced or renovations for the Student Center Terrace Stage. After a 26 percent voter turnout from the senior class, the stage renovations was determined as the Senior Class Gift.

Before these three options were put to a vote by the graduating class, a committee of seniors met to review all of the project proposals and narrowed down the options from which to choose. The committee members decided on the gift based on the criteria of the project being tangible and something that alumni could come back and see; helping to increase school pride and/or build traditions; and be attainable so that the project was affordable for students to complete.

This year’s Senior Gift Planning Committee consisted of four student co-chairs: Nick Constantino, Brenda Guzman, Bill Miller and Jeremy Le’Ogier.

Constantino, a third-year political science major graduating a year early, decided to get involved with the planning committee after finding out about it at a Grad Expo table.

“I hadn’t really been involved during my time at UCI since I’m a commuter,” Constantino said. “I thought this was a good way to give back.”

In order to spread the word about the campaign, the committee has been giving presentations to student clubs and organizations, sending out Direct Mail communication, utilizing the Telephone Outreach Program and tabling on Ring Road. A table was recently set up at the Senior Class Barbecue on Thursday, April 25 to inform students of the project.

Of the visitors to the table, there were some students interested in the project and who made donations throughout the day.

“I think I’ll give $20.13,” Ye Rin Joung, a fourth-year neurobiology major, said after visiting the table. “I just want to give back to my school.”

Some students, on the other hand, weren’t as easily convinced and inclined to donate.

“Tuition is already so high and I’m already in debt,” Jasmine Mistry, a fourth-year biology major, said when talking about her reservations about making a donation. “I’d rather donate to charity.”

Addressing comments such as these and hoping to persuade students, the brochure for the campaign says that a donation “directly affects our ranking in U.S. News & World Report, which in turn enhances the value of your degree and can influence your career.”

Additionally, campaign organizers see a benefit in contributing to gifts such as this one.

“Each class leaves their mark on the University and displays their passion, commitment and gratitude for the education they received,” Melissa Salazar, Executive Director of Engagement & Annual Programs, said.

“What’s great about the Senior Class Gift is that it’s a visible demonstration to future students of the positive impact that philanthropy has on the campus.”

Whether students agree with these points or not will be determined by the amount raised for the project. The total cost of the renovation is $100,000 — it is hoped that the Senior Class can pay for at least $15,000 of this amount, with the Student Center then covering the remaining costs.

The date of the completed project has yet to be determined — it is dependent on how much and by when the money is raised.