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Alumni make May 15 a “great day”

Generations of Bates students and alumni have rallied around the slogan “It’s a Great Day to Be a Bobcat!” On May 15, alumni from around the world committed to making the day especially grand.

The Bobcat looks forward to May 15, when Bates seeks 555 additional alumni donors to the Bates Fund in one day. Photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College

The Bobcat takes a break after May 15′s “It’s a Great Day to Be a Bobcat” campaign, when Bates sought 555 additional alumni donors to the Bates Fund in one day. Photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College

The college sought 555 additional alumni donors to the Bates Fund in one day, part of the ongoing campaign to reach 55 percent alumni participation by the close of the giving year on June 30.

Alumni easily exceeded the goal with 599 total gifts, bringing their total Bates Fund participation thus far to 37 percent, a three-point increase in one day.

The slogan “It’s a great day to be a Bobcat” comes from former football coach Web Harrison ’63, who adapted the cheer from his days as a U.S. Marine — “It’s a great day to be a Marine!”

Today it is used to observe any successful Bates endeavor.

The Wednesday event, dubbed “It’s a Great Day to Be a Bobcat!,” celebrated alumni pride while also raising awareness about Bates Fund giving, which supports faculty salaries and student financial aid, among other programs.

The May 15 challenge came on the heels of several recent Bates Fund successes. This spring, young alumni secured Bates’ first March Mania victory, defeating Colby, Connecticut College and Trinity in a competition to see which college could garner the most gifts to their annual funds from their 10 youngest class years.

Last year, Bates alumni achieved a record-breaking 55 percent participation and earned an extra $500,000 for the college.

Alumni had until midnight on May 15 to make their gifts and be counted in the challenge.



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