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Illustration of Palm Drive at Stanford

Seniors for The Stanford Fund

From the Seniors for the Stanford Fund Committee

A message to our classmates

Each year, the graduating class comes together to celebrate their time at Stanford, and to raise funds and awareness for areas of Stanford that directly impact the undergraduate experience.

But as with everything this year, our Seniors for The Stanford Fund campaign will look different.

As a committee, we plan to focus on two goals:

  • Create fun and memorable opportunities for class connection.

  • Raise support for areas of Stanford that make it a more equitable institution, such as financial aid and scholarships.

We acknowledge that this isn’t the usual celebration that would be associated with our senior year at Stanford. Still, Class of 2021, this is our graduation year—let’s come together to celebrate and make an impact.

Sincerely, Seniors for The Stanford Fund Committee

Abby Fleischli, Annie Joyce, Camille Dawson, Caroline Kim, Casey Borovsky, Corinne Zanolli, Emma Rashes, Faith Koh, Gabe Alvarez, Grace Connor, Ilham Osman, Jared Hysinger, Jiyoung Jeong, Katherine Du, Muskan Shafat, Poppy Brittingham, Ryan Chandra, Ryland Pampush, Saket Myneni, Shanna Trott, and Yesenia Ulloa

Class of 2021

Do senior gift your way

Step 1: Choose one of two ways to give back

1. Donate

Donate through The Stanford Fund

Your senior gift can support Stanford students in the ways that are meaningful to you. See the choices and make your gift below or through venmo @SeniorsforTheStanfordFund. When making a gift through venmo, be sure to include your SUID # and the area(s) you wish to support.

2. Volunteer

Turn service hours into dollars to donate

Participate in the Dollars for Doers Challenge, where every hour of volunteering you complete (up to 10 hours) unlocks $25 from generous alumni donors, to donate directly to students through The Stanford Fund.

Step 2: Choose where to send your gift

This is your chance to support the parts of Stanford you are most passionate about.

Every senior has a unique Stanford experience. Each one of us appreciates certain things about Stanford, but there are also things that could be better, and we recognize it will take collective action to improve them. When you give through Seniors for The Stanford Fund, you can choose to support an area of campus you’re passionate about.

Student life

Support community centers, student groups, and campus-wide events that make the Stanford experience unique.

Undergraduate academics

Support all undergraduate majors and create an exceptional academic experience.

Your gift will be tripled!

As a senior, your gift goes even further. Thanks to a generous alumni, any gift you make will be matched 2:1 (excluding matched gifts through Dollars for Doers). That is, a $20 student gift will result in a $40 gift from the alumni, meaning a $60 gift overall!

Make your gift on Venmo @seniorsforTheStanfordFund

Don't forget to include the following information in the comment section (set to private):

-The area(s) you wish to support

-Your SUID# (starts with 0)

Why your gift matters to students

When you give through Seniors for The Stanford Fund, you support programs and initiatives that make the Stanford experience exceptional for all students.

“Stanford Financial Aid has provided me the opportunity to attend this institution, and for that I am so grateful. Through Stanford, I was able to connect with an amazing group of women of color in my year. After connecting, we decided to begin a nonprofit organization together focused on combatting racism through education reform. Our efforts have been deeply supported by the university and I know that this experience would not have come to be without being a Stanford student.”

-Jasmine Nguyen, ’23

“I never thought Stanford was in the cards for someone from a socioeconomic background like mine. However, thanks to the Stanford Fund, I attend Stanford tuition-free, completed a summer program in Mexico, and studied abroad in Japan for over a year. These experiences deeply enriched my time at Stanford, and the lessons and memories I gained from these years will stay with me always.”

-Cristina Ammon, ’21

“Through Stanford's generous programs like financial aid and the Leland Scholar's Program I have not had to worry about money. With that level of foundational support, I was able to do more. I worked interesting side jobs which furthered my career prospects in the non-profit and technology spaces, and I was even able to begin investing in stock and currency markets. I do not think that a price can be placed on the mental security that comes with financial security. The ripple effects are almost incalculable.” 

-Anonymous Leland Scholar

Frequent questions

  • Philanthropy, or as you’ll often hear us say, giving, literally means goodwill to other humans. In practice, it refers to providing support for organizations, causes, or initiatives that are important to you. 

    For example, a gift to Stanford allows you to give back to a community that has helped you become who you are today and ensures the same or better opportunities are accessible to other students. Your philanthropy also includes your support for organizations that align with your passions, such as an animal shelter or relief aid during an emergency like the California wildfires. 

    All that to say, every one of us can be a philanthropist through our gifts of our time, talents, or financial resources.

  • Opportunities to support students can be driven by different things, whether it’s the priorities determined by university leaders (i.e. The Stanford Fund), your own passions (i.e. funds for specific programs or departments), or community mobilization (i.e. mutual aid and solidarity funds).

    You can explore and choose the ways to give back that are meaningful to you. Whatever you choose, you will help ensure every undergraduate student has the best possible Stanford experience.

  • Stanford’s endowment covers only about 22 percent of the university’s budget annually and is meant to support Stanford in perpetuity. The endowment provides a steady stream of income, but only if spending is held to about 5.5 percent each year. So, the university must fund more than three-quarters of its operating expenses, including financial aid, student and academic organization support, and other areas integral to the undergraduate experience, every year from other sources, including through donor support. 

    Additionally, nearly 80 percent of the Stanford endowment is restricted or designated for specific uses. The endowment is actually made up of more than 8,000 different funds. Of these, 7,300 were established by donors, and most of them are designated for specific purposes, such as supporting first-generation college students or advancing a particular field of study. Stanford has a legal and fiduciary obligation to use these funds as intended.

    For more details about the purpose and limitations of the endowment, we recommend this article in Stanford Magazine

  • The Stanford Fund, the annual fund for undergraduate education, provides vital flexibility for supporting students.

    The majority of gifts to Stanford—and almost 80 percent of endowment funds—are restricted. Funds given for research, for example, cannot be used for financial aid. Gifts through The Stanford Fund can be used to address the areas of greatest need or to meet unexpected expenses.

    When you give through The Stanford Fund, you are also able to designate the destination of your gift to either financial aid, mental health initiatives, academic innovation, student life, or the Opportunity Fund. Targeted gifts sustain these initiatives and allow you to advocate for positive change within the university.

  • Every cause is important and no gift is too small. When seniors give through The Stanford Fund, gifts are tripled by a generous donor, amplifying our impact on the causes that matter to us, helping to transform Stanford for future generations. 

    As Stanford’s soon-to-be most recent alumni, you know best how programs and initiatives impact the undergraduate experience. Giving to Stanford, no matter the size of your gift, is a way for seniors to have our voices heard amongst larger, institutional donors in support of the future of undergraduate programs at Stanford that matter most to us. 

    Many philanthropists also give simply because they like knowing they are helping someone, regardless of the size of their gift. Gifts can be personally impactful, as well.

  • 84 percent of undergraduates leave Stanford with zero student debt because Stanford is committed to meeting the demonstrated need of students through scholarships, not loans. Donor support makes that possible and it is a great source of pride for the university.

    Given the financial impact the pandemic has had, students and their families need financial support more than ever. Giving allows all students admitted to Stanford to attend without restriction from financial burden making it a more equitable institution.

    “Providing targeted financial support for equity initiatives within Stanford—like financial aid and the Opportunity Fund—is an important component of the sustained advocacy for fellow students that is my responsibility as a privileged soon-to-be alum.” - Gabe Hillman Alvarez, ’21

Events

Cream for Seniors event
April 21

Cream for Seniors

Stop by White Plaza for free CREAM ice cream sandwiches and learn more about our Dollars for Doers Challenge. 

Wednesday, April 21, 2021
4 p.m.

Movie night at Frost
May 16

Senior Movie Night at Frost

Sponsored by Seniors for The Stanford Fund

Advanced registration required.

Sunday, May 16, 2021
Doors open at 7 p.m., Screening starts at 8 p.m.