Next month, members of the Davidson family will gather to celebrate the impact of The Davidson Trust on campus at the 5th annual Dinner at Davidson. This student-led fundraising and awareness effort aims to showcase student achievements that tell the story of diversity on campus and why it matters to our community.
In support of the college's longstanding commitment to need-blind admission, The Davidson Trust makes it possible for talented students from all backgrounds to imagine coming to Davidson, irrespective of their financial circumstances.
Dinner at Davidson takes place Friday, Feb. 7.
"This is an event about the Davidson community," said Emily Rapport '16, chair of Dinner at Davidson. "We hope the displays of student work will be a conversation starter at the dinner and around the community. The Davidson Trust is important because it allows students from diverse backgrounds to build off of each other's talents in a diverse community, and that makes Davidson distinctive."
While the money raised from the event for The Davidson Trust scholarship program is a principal goal, the student committee focuses just as much energy on the awareness and understanding components of the event. Another important factor is to illustrate how committed to this effort Davidson students are, regardless of whether their financial aid packages benefit directly from the program.
"Not only do the students serving on the Dinner at Davidson committee benefit from a unique, one-of-a-kind community," said Rapport, "we are intentional about giving thanks and contributing to our campus. We express our appreciation for The Davidson Trust in a way that only current students can-by harnessing different talents from within the student body."
Leading up to the event, the students engage the campus community through "10 Days of Trust" awareness events. The objectives this year are to educate students about college finance and how to talk about Davidson's commitment to need-blind admission and to highlight distinctive elements of the Davidson community by partnering with other campus organizations, such as the Honor Council.
"Our goal is to refocus students' attention on celebrating our campus community, which we sometimes forget to do when we get caught up in the school routine," said Rapport.
"We want to remind students to celebrate the Davidson community by calling special attention to one of the key initiatives that sets our school apart from the rest."
Leading up to and following the event, the Dinner at Davidson online auction runs Jan. 29 - Feb. 9, which provides another way for alumni, faculty, staff and friends of the college to get involved. All proceeds from the auction benefit The Davidson Trust.
The Dinner at Davidson committee-10 students in the core leadership group who meet weekly plus approximately 15 others who serve on subcommittees-is advised by annual giving staff members Katharine Hubbard Atkins '05, associate director, and Kate Ceremsak '12, coordinator.
"Davidson students are pulled in so many different directions, and to see their commitment to something that affects their current experience is really inspiring," said Atkins. "This is not a typical extracurricular experience; this is truly a labor of love."
Since the start of Dinner at Davidson, students have raised nearly $150,000 for the Dinner at Davidson, Davidson Trust Scholarship.