FARMVILLE, Va. – On March 25, madness was cause for celebration.
Longwood athletics’ annual day of giving known as Lancer Giving Madness reached new heights once again in 2021, as the global Longwood community pulled together to raise more than $120,000 for Longwood’s student-athletes and athletics programs.
More than 800 donors combined to raise that record amount, which nearly doubled the previous benchmark of $67,852 that the 24-hour day of giving generated in 2019. The funds generated in 2021 will go directly toward enhancing the Longwood student-athlete experience through scholarship funds, program-specific operating budgets and special projects prioritized by each of Longwood’s 14 varsity athletics programs.
Along with the dollars raised by specific programs, Longwood athletics raised nearly $20,000 for four student-athlete scholarships, including the Jerome Kersey Men’s Basketball Scholarship, Mark D. McArdle Scholarship, Lancer Operating Scholarship and Student-Athlete Excellence Fund.
The more than $125,000 is a projected amount based on gifts and pledges received during Lancer Giving Madness and more than doubled the athletics department’s goal of $60,000 entering the event.
“Every year during Lancer Giving Madness, it seems we set a new bar that can’t possibly be cleared,” said Longwood athletics director Michelle Meadows. “But this year, like all of our past LGM fundraisers, I’m ecstatic that the Longwood community proved me wrong once again.
“Making gifts directly to our teams and scholarship funds is the most impactful way to support our student-athletes, and it’s humbling that more than 800 individuals made that effort this year. To raise more than $120,000 in a single day provides an immediate boost that will allow us to continue to attract and retain high-caliber student-athletes and provide them a meaningful and transformative experience that will benefit them long after they graduate from Longwood.”
Longwood men’s basketball led all teams, raising more than $30,000, while women’s soccer also reached five figures in gifts with $11,825. Women’s soccer also had the most donors with 184, while women’s basketball received gifts from 110 people for a total approaching $7,000. Longwood men’s golf raised the fourth-largest amount with $6,440, while field hockey received the fifth-largest amount with $5,692.
Women’s cross country, in its first full season under head coach Brooke Craig, had the highest boost in donors, totaling 54 for an increase of 260 percent from the 2019 fundraiser. That was the sixth-most total donors contributing to a single program, trailing women’s soccer, women’s basketball, women’s lacrosse (61), cheerleading (56) and field hockey (56).
“The outpouring of support that Longwood athletics received during Lancer Giving Madness is truly a testament to how committed Lancer Nation is to advancing the student-athlete journey,” said Longwood Director of Donor Engagement Kylie Dyer, a 2015 Longwood graduate and former four-year letterwinner on the women’s soccer team.
“We are so incredibly grateful for each and every one of our donors who made gifts on March 25th and directly impacted the student-athlete experience, both in the arena of competition and in the classroom.”
Among the projects earmarked by each program are new road uniforms for baseball, developmental programming for men’s and women’s basketball student-athletes; preseason training travel and a new cross-training bike for men’s and women’s cross country; video analysis equipment for field hockey; additional tournament opportunities for men’s golf and a destination tournament in 2022 for women’s golf; video analysis equipment and new uniforms for women’s lacrosse; game analysis software and video equipment for men’s soccer; mini goals and coast-to-coast recruiting funds for women’s soccer; new uniforms, game analysis software and additional practice equipment for softball; additional tournament opportunities for men’s and women’s tennis; and new gear and developmental programming for cheerleading.
Lancer Giving Madness began in 2015 as a micro-giving campaign whose purpose was to engage a large population in a campus and community-wide push to support Longwood student-athletes and athletics programs. It has since become part of Longwood University’s annual “Love Your Longwood Day,” whose aim is similarly to engage as many donors within the larger Longwood community to support the entire university during a 24-hour giving campaign.
For this year’s Love Your Longwood Day, Longwood athletics had the largest amount of donors of any participating department or group and fundraised the second-largest amount total.
Since its launch in 2015, Lancer Giving Madness has raised more than $300,000 dollars for Longwood athletics and has surpassed the previous year’s total every year.