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The Daily Tar Heel

Tuition Free Day calls for giving

As tuition continues to rise, many students don’t realize that they are paying for only a fraction of their education.

If UNC’s budget only ran on student tuition money, the school year could not extend past Sept. 19 — a fact that the Heelraisers Student Giving Council called attention to through their Tuition Free Day event Thursday.

The fundraising group is sponsored by the Office of University Development. The Heelraisers hold several events throughout the year both to encourage student giving and to show appreciation for University donors.

Tuition and fees cover 12.6 percent of UNC’s estimated $2 billion budget, and private donations account for 9.4 percent.

“Donations are increasingly more important as we take on budget cuts,” said Jordan Farthing, the director of UNC’s Student Giving Programs. “The generosity of alumni and friends of Carolina creates the margin of excellence that we have come to know and love at Carolina.”

Farthing said many of UNC’s scholarship programs and other resources for students in need are funded through donations.

Some students at the event Thursday made donations to the 2014 Senior Campaign for Carolina, which strives to get 48 percent of seniors to give money to UNC. Last year, seniors donated $33,000 to the University.

“It’s important to note how important private giving is in general,” said Heelraisers President Shelby Goerne. “A lot of students don’t think about this typically, but much of UNC is successful because of private funding.”

Heelraisers Vice President Kayla Blevins said the event, held yearly, is a good way to introduce students to the group’s campaign.

“I like this event because it gives new council members and others an idea of who we are, and the event is a good way to start the year,” Blevins said.

“It explains why private giving is so important.”

The group’s next event, Give Thanks to UNC Day, will be held Nov. 19 and will feature a large card for students to sign thanking donors for their contributions.

“Although we pay tuition, there’s a lot that this doesn’t cover, and it’s important to give back to the place we benefit from,” Blevins said. “There’s a lot Carolina gives us, and it’s important to give back to Carolina.”

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