Kelli Smith | April 26, 2018
At 18:42 military time Sunday, a live broadcast showcasing Notre Dame students, alumni, faculty and friends through a variety of interviews, performances and events kicked off for 29-straight hours.
The broadcast’s start time was symbolic — Notre Dame was founded in the year 1842. And after nearly 176 years of generation after generation making its mark on the University’s history, the fifth-annual Notre Dame Day strived to reconnect the Notre Dame family by sharing campus stories while raising funds for student and alumni groups with a direct impact on students.
With its official close Tuesday morning, Notre Dame Day program director Pablo Martinez, a 2011 graduate, said the event hit record-highs by accumulating over 115,000 views on the broadcast’s website alone and over 31,500 gifts totaling over $2.1 million.
“When it was all said and done there were 880 groups that had a stake in Notre Dame Day,” Martinez said. “ … Our goal is to tell the Notre Dame story more broadly [and] get more people to realize yes, you can have an impact with a gift because that really impacts the group.”
According to the percentage of votes an organization received over the course of the 29 hours, a $1.1 million University challenge fund was divided to add to the donors’ gifts and encourage competition between different groups, Notre Dame Day’s website said.
Every initial $10 donation made to an organization featured on Notre Dame Day’s website counted for five votes, while every subsequent gift from the same donor counted as one vote, assistant director of volunteer leadership Ellen Roof, a 2015 graduate, said. By limiting the number of additional votes, Roof said the program pushed for involving a broader audience of people.
“Other than the freshmen, everyone on campus has experienced a Notre Dame Day now, so all the student groups are already counting on that budget money and they know how big of a difference that funding makes,” she said.