40 Hours for the Forty Acres Sets Fundraising Challenge for Alumni and Students

The University of Texas at Austin is launching 40 Hours for the Forty Acres, an online giving campaign on April 3-4 designed to involve students and alumni in supporting the university.

As part of UT Austin's goal to involve all alumni during the last year of the historic $3 billion Campaign for Texas, 40 Hours for the Forty Acres offers a challenge to encourage alumni and students to join in and give back.

At 12:40 a.m. on April 3, Longhorns everywhere will have exactly 40 hours to raise $40,000 through a multichannel fundraising effort that includes email, phone, social media and a student fundraising event. In addition to the monetary goal, organizers hope to see at least 400 student donors take part in the challenge.

"40 for Forty is a completely new approach to fundraising at The University of Texas at Austin," said Teryl Henderson, chairman of the 40 for Forty committee. "It's a unique way to make a gift because there are so many opportunities for people to support their passions at UT."

"We only have 40 hours to raise $40,000," said Luke Ward, a senior majoring in corporate communications. "It's a challenge, but Longhorns love a good challenge."

Texas Exes Alumni Association representative Ernie Garrido, a member of the Class of 2004, said, "The message that small gifts make a huge impact at UT will certainly inspire alumni to remain active donors beyond this 40-hour fundraiser." Garrido, who serves as Texas Exes Brownsville chapter president continues, "Our chapter has certainly embraced the campaign, and we are very excited to help make 40 for Forty a huge success."

UT student organizations and governing bodies plan to participate in the student fundraising component of 40 for Forty. "Being a Longhorn means being plugged into your community, and UT is my community now and for the rest of my life," said Senate of College Councils officer Siddharth Sridhar, a senior majoring in economics and Plan II.

Organizers hope the event will become an annual tradition. "I'd love it if alumni and students began to look forward to making their yearly gift during 40 for Forty," Henderson said.

To get involved with 40 for Forty or to make a gift, visit 40for40.utexas.edu or follow UT Austin. For questions contact Teryl Henderson at teryl@austin.utexas.edu.