University receives $2 million from Stover Foundation

The new Opportunity and Knowledge Strengthened (OAKS) campaign was announced in Alumni Hall Friday, Sept. 24, during a kick-off event.

In the 1990s when the campus was being redesigned, oak trees were purposely left to show the indication of this university. The name of the campaign was titled OAKS for that reason.

Waynesburg University President Douglas G. Lee said the oak tree is a testament of the university.

Stacey Brodak, vice president of Institutional Advancement and University Relations, commented on the university’s relationship with donors.

“Our goal is to foster relationships with donors and double the number of funds or major gifts that are coming into this institution,” said Brodak.

The Stover Foundation donated two million dollars to help jumpstart the campaign. This was not the first generous donation by the foundation, as the foundation also made the Stover Campus Center, that was dedicated in 1999, possible through donations.

However, the university took a different approach with the OAKS campaign than it has with past events.

“I think campaigns are a common tool for universities, but how we structured ours is important,” said Brodak. “The trend is to structure very long term campaigns even as long as ten years. We didn’t want to do that we wanted to keep ours in a confided period of five.”

The OAKS campaign will begin this year and end in December of 2020. This new campaign for Waynesburg is a new idea that, now, many universities have tried.

Most universities have campaigns that last as long as ten years and even longer. They also did not set an end dollar amount to reach.

“I think that ultimately, whatever the needs are of this institution, whether it would be current or future, the OAKS campaign would address those,” said Brodak. “The extra dollars will help us address any needs we have. But the goal is, and hopefully there would be enough, to help us into the future.”

The donors of the OAKS campaign can choose how we use the money that is being donated. But, it can be used for the needs and wants of this university.

“Once people are in the habit of giving and they see what we are doing,” said Broadak. “And get the benefit of that and see their legacy we are hopeful to create momentum for other gifts.”

Other than the donations that they are giving, the donors can be forever remembering through a gift to the university. The gift can help guarantee the future of this university.