The Badger Funds 8th Annual Student-Athlete Thank-a-Thon held December 3-5 at Camp Randall Stadium was another resounding success. Over 235 student-athletes representing each of the 23 UW athletic teams volunteered several hours of their time to call 5,500 randomly selected donors nationwide to thank them for their financial support of the Badgers. Donors who were not reached by telephone received a personal thank you note from a student-athlete.
The Thank-a-Thon is an important part of our athletic development efforts, said Marija Pientka, associate athletic director for development and former UW womens tennis student-athlete. First, it provides a unique way for our student-athletes to directly acknowledge the support of individual contributors. Second, it gives us an opportunity to educate our student-athletes on the importance of private support and the impact it has on their experience at the University of Wisconsin.
The conversations and feedback the student-athletes received from the donors varied with each phone call they made. Some student-athletes had to explain the phone call was simply a thank-you and not a solicitation. With so many people having caller ID its not uncommon for the student-athletes to get a call back from a donor who missed their call, which certainly provided an opportunity for dialogue.
Jim and Gail Amble of Arlington, Texas wrote: My wife and I very much appreciated the follow-up thank you from Braden McLoughlin (wrestling)regarding our donation to the Badger Fund. We didn't give that much and were quite surprised and pleased to receive the call.
The UW Athletic Department receives no state tax dollars to support its annual operating budget. Instead, it is a self-sustaining program that relies on private gifts, as well as other external revenue sources, to meet its annual costs. Contributions are used to fund scholarships, equipment, travel and other needs as determined by the Director of Athletics.
Please contact the Badger Fund at 608-262-1000 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about how you can help support Wisconsin Athletics.