End of Trustee Challenge results in additional $500k support of Rider students

Annual Fund finishes fiscal year with strong results
Adam Grybowski

More than 2,000 people answered the call to make new or increased gifts to Rider this fiscal year as part of the Trustee Challenge. As a result, an additional $500,000 will be contributed to the University’s Annual Fund, which supports student scholarships, study abroad programs, student-faculty research projects, multicultural programming, career services initiatives, campus improvements and much more.

Rider Trustees announced in December 2016 their commitment to match — dollar for dollar — up to $250,000 of all new or increased gifts to the Annual Fund.

The Challenge far exceeded this goal when it wrapped on June 30, finishing with $477,906 worth of new or increased gifts.

“The phenomenal response to this Challenge proves how deeply people believe in Rider’s commitment to the personal and professional success of our students,” says Vice President for University Advancement Jonathan Meer. “We are extremely pleased this additional support will contribute to and enhance the student experience at Rider. And we are truly grateful for the leadership of our Trustees and the generosity of the thousands of alumni, parents, students, faculty, staff and friends who stepped up with new or enhanced gifts this year.”

Overall, the 2017 fiscal year was one of the best for the Annual Fund in two decades, Meer says. Gifts increased by 26 percent, as compared to last year. 

Five hundred and three people made their first-ever gift to the Annual Fund this year, which represented a 43 percent increase from the previous year. Brittany Blythe ’14, who majored in psychology, was one of them.

“As a first-generation student from a low-income family, it was important for me to choose a university that would support my goals and shape me into a well-rounded professional. At Rider I was able to receive that,” says Blythe. “Rider was not just a university, it was my home and the staff was my family. I was able to rely on professors, staff and friends to help get me through the transition, help me build my resume and foster connections with professionals that I would’ve never got on my own.”