The Kettering community came out in full force for this year’s FUNd Drive, exceeding the participation goal by 4% and raising $6,000 more than the previous year.
“All of us at the University are connected by a common bond exemplified by the spirit of True Kettering,” said Matthew O’Toole, Co-chair of the 2023 FUNd Drive.
Over the past 10 years, the Kettering FUNd Drive has raised more than $600,000 for students in need of financial support. The annual fund drive invites the University to contribute toward scholarships like Keep Me Kettering and Women Helping Women. The overwhelming amount of annual contributions continues to strengthen the bond between students and the supportive Kettering community.
This spring, O’Toole and FUNd Drive Co-Chair Andrea Kehoe’s leadership helped them surpass their 82% participation goal. The campaign ran from April 11 to May 9.
“It is incredibly heartening for faculty and staff who deeply believe in the education Kettering provides to support this drive. By investing in this institution, we're helping to ensure its future success,” said Kehoe, Director of Operations Administration, who has been at the University since 2017.
Among the options to support, Kehoe donated to the Kettering Gift Fund. This fund allows the University to plan for unbudgeted and unpredictable opportunities that arise during the school year.
“It helps address unexpected facilities and programmatic needs,” Kehoe said.
As the second-most allocated fund, it helps improve the overall campus experience, including student resources such as academic programs, on-campus activities, research equipment and general facilities.
O’Toole, who is a Professor of Mathematics and has been with the University for a decade, was excited to serve as the drive’s co-chair because it enabled him to collaborate with the University Advancement team.
He supported the Keep Me Kettering Scholarship Fund, which supports students who face financial challenges. Students can use the scholarship to pay tuition. Since its inception, the fund has raised more than $2.3 million, helping 265 students in need.
As a member of the Recruitment and Retention Faculty Senate Committee, O’Toole understands the importance of this fund, and he’s not alone. During the FUNd Drive, the Keep Me Kettering Scholarship Fund was the most popular recipient of employee gifts.
“To lose quality students because of an inability to afford tuition would be greatly discouraging,” he said.
To encourage staff and faculty participation, O’Toole and Kehoe awarded Donna’s Donuts to departments that earned 100% participation. In the end, 22 departments celebrated with these delicious treats.
Nearly half of the total donations arrived during the campaign's first week. Throughout the month, the Kettering community came together, put forth its best efforts and surpassed the campaign’s participation goal, reaching 86% University participation and raising $64,182. Kehoe was not surprised.
“The people at Kettering are our best asset, and they care deeply,” she said.