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Upstate Giving: Clemson philanthropists break records

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Wilbur O. and Ann Powers College of Business is one recipient of the Power's $60 million donation to the university this year. (Photo/Ross Norton)Despite pandemic fears, donors to Clemson University raised a record $202 million for the school during the past fiscal year.

The donations created 115 news scholarships and fellowships, as well as 85 new endowments worth $24 million. Principal gifts included 21 gifts of $1 million or more, and unrestricted dollar donations breached the $3.6 million mark, according to a news release today.

“I am grateful to all of our donors who stepped up during a difficult year,” Clemson President Jim Clements said in the release. “Thanks to your generosity, we exceeded all of our fundraising goals and set a new record for the university. I am especially grateful to Billy and Ann Powers for their transformative gift — the largest in Clemson’s history. Thank you for supporting us through the challenges of 2020 and for helping move Clemson forward.”

The Powers donated $60 million to the business school, the largest amount ever gifted to the university.

About 17% of all alumni contributed to Clemson over the past year, one of the most significant donations being $1.25 million extended to the College of Science by mathematics graduate Emily Peek Wallace. Other major alumni donations included $3 million to the College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities from Laura and Bill Pelham and $2.5 million to the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences from Amy and Mitchell Scott.

“Our donors and supporters didn’t just adapt to the challenges this past year; they found a way to engage with our students, faculty and staff, supporting the Clemson experience and programs dear to their hearts,” Brian O’Rourke, vice president of development and alumni relations, said in the release. “This is demonstrated in the fundraising results. We appreciate and thank each one of them. In the midst of video meetings and social distancing, Clemson University received its largest donation to date, along with a number of new gifts and endowments. This shows the passion and commitment of the Clemson family and their investment in our students and the future of the university.”

A total of 34,628 donors contributed 92,127 gifts for a grand sum of $202,396,430.

IPTAY and the school’s athletics department also saw continued support.

“Our IPTAY donors continue to answer the call in support of our nearly 500 Clemson student-athletes. Through their generosity, the One-IPTAY enterprise marked a record fundraising year of $76.3 million in contributions,” Davis Babb, CEO of IPTAY, said in the release “This gift total is comprised of gifts to our annual fund, major giving and planned giving efforts. These donations are essential to the success of our 19-sport athletic program and directly support our student-athletes by way of scholarships, academic support services, strength and conditioning, life skills, facility initiatives, nutrition services and more.”

Reach Molly Hulsey at 864-720-1223.

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