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Students to thank alumni donors for contributions to ND

Shannon O'Brien | Sunday, February 19, 2012

Students are trading in the turkey and stuffing of Thanksgiving for thank-you cards and envelopes this week for Notre Dame’s Student Development Committee’s signature event, “Thanksgiving in February”.

Today through Wednesday, students can give thanks to the alumni donors who help make their education possible by filling out thank-you cards.

“Many students don’t realize how important these alumni are, but without their generosity, we couldn’t enjoy many of the opportunities and experiences we take for granted each day at ND,” junior and event organizer Mia Genereaux said.

Although Thanksgiving seems out of place in February, Genereaux said this time of year is perfect for the event.

“We run the event in February, because it is in the middle of this month that alumni donations take over our expenses as students,” she said. “Our tuition only covers our expenses from August through mid-February. So, from now through the end of the year, we rely on alumni donations.”

Though yearly tuition seems like it would be more than sufficient to cover costs, Genereaux said it only covers about 50 percent of the yearly expense of educating a student at Notre Dame. This makes alumni donations extremely significant, especially in tough economic times.

“We believe that it is our duty to show our gratitude to ND alumni who donate, especially during these tough economic times,” Genereaux said. “Alumni love hearing from current students, and opening a handwritten note means so much more than receiving an automated, mass email.”

Freshman Emily Pollard said this event provides an opportunity for her to personally thank the alumni who have given her so much.

“The alumni are just as integral to the Notre Dame community as all of the current students,” she said. “Writing a personal thank-you is my way to acknowledge their continued support.”

This year, the Student Development Committee has set an all-time high goal of 2,000 cards, Genereaux said. To achieve this goal, the event has been extended from the previous year’s two-day time frame to a three-day event.

Students who wish to participate can stop by LaFortune’s Sorin Room from 11 to 3 p.m. Monday through Wednesday to sign cards and receive free T-shirts and Jimmy John’s sandwiches.