I Heart WSU Week Calendar Graphic

I Love WSU Week is hosted by Alumni Relations and SOAR (Student Organization of Alumni Relations) and sponsored by the WSU Foundation. This week was created as a way to bring awareness, encourage philanthropy among students, and highlight what our current donors have already done. Not only is this week for students, but there are also ways for faculty, staff, alumni and friends to take part in the events. Throughout the week, there are many opportunities to share and show your love for WSU.

A bench on campus with W feature and donor sticker

Photo Credit: Ka Vang ’16

The week starts with Tag Day on Monday, when the campus will be covered with tags showing everything that was made possible because of donors. Inside and outside of buildings will be hundreds of tags showing off the possibilities of generous gifts. From the beautifully framed photography showcased in Somsen Hall, to that tree near the center of campus that turns bright yellow every fall, these things are here all because of donors. Take a stroll through campus to see all of the other items that are here because of donors– some may surprise you.

Wazoo poses with female students holding signs

Photo Credit: Andrew Thoreson

Day 2 is I Love WSU Day– which is very fitting because it is also Valentine’s Day! Stop by the Lower Hyphen between 11am – 2pm to share what you love about WSU, play trivia and possibly win some prizes. We have various items, including gifts cards, which were all donated by local businesses. Everyone who comes and takes a photo will also be entered to win a grand prize.

Students at Get the Scoop Day

Photo Credit: Ka Vang ’16

Wednesday is Get the Scoop Day, which is exactly what it sounds like– free ice cream. Students who come to the Lower Hyphen between 11am – 2pm and write a personalized thank you to first time donors will receive a scoop of ice cream.

I love WSU Donor Buttons on black background

Photo Credit: Ka Vang ’16

Thursday kicks off the All University Campaign, which encourages faculty and staff to become donors and say thank you to those who are already. President Olson will be speaking as well as a student scholarship recipient and Morey the robot! There will also be a special performance by the WSU Choir.

I Love WSU Week Button

Throughout the entire week, there will be an opportunity for alumni and students to be involved with this week of giving. Alumni and friends will be able to give through the first ever I Love WSU Week Crowdfunding Campaign. During the week long campaign there will be challenges to encourage donations and double the impact of giving thanks to an anonymous donor who will match certain gifts dollar for dollar.

In addition, students can become involved with giving by participating through the penny wars. All week there will be canisters representing each academic college–Liberal Arts, Business, Education, Science and Engineering, Nursing and Health Sciences– and the college with the most points will receive all of the money raised. Pennies and paper bills are positive points, silver coins are negative points. Students can support their college or go against other colleges in this friendly competition.

Katie Gottstein wearing an I Love WSU Week Button and holding her hands in the shape of a heart

Photo Credit: Lauren Haya Photography

This week holds a special place in my heart because without the generous support of donors, WSU would not be where it is today. I have been extremely fortunate to call WSU my home for almost six years, four as a student and two as an employee. I personally love WSU because of the support from the entire community– the campus and Winona community. They truly know how to make you feel at home and proud to call it home for however long you are here.

We set the bar high last year with our first I Love WSU Week. Nearly 5,000 people made a gift to the Foundation (this is anyone from staff to alumni and includes multiple gifts of all sizes to various funds.)

Because of this support, the Foundation was able to award over 900 scholarships this year. I personally benefited from a scholarship while I was a student and without it, I would not be where I am today. It only makes sense to return the favor for future generations.

Let’s try to set a new record this year!

–Katie Gottstein ‘15