Cheering and crying filled the air in front of USD’s Legacy statue as members of Dakotathon announced they had raised $37,011.17 for Children’s Miracle Network during their annual Push Day.
Push Day is a part of For The Kids (FTK) week, a week focused on raising awareness and donations for the organization during the fall semester. This year, Dakotathon hopes to reach an overall goal of raising $200,000 by their big event in April.
Libby Bullerdick, external overall chair of Dakotathon and a senior business and strategic communications major, said Push Day is just as much about the kids as it is raising money.
“We host different power hours depending on your participation in the organization,” Bullerdick said. “We also have incentives like free blizzards, we have our trivia night at 9 and then we do our vigil, which is when we reflect on why we do what we do and why we’re fighting because we have had kids in the past who have lost their battle to illnesses.”
The original fundraising goal for Push Day was $14,000, Bullerdick said.
“Once we hit $14,000 at 2 p.m., we knew that we wanted to get to $22,000, and once we got that, we kind of just let people run with it,” she said. “We didn’t want to keep setting goals, because the whole point of Push Day is to be excited and be hype about fundraising, not to be stressed about reaching a certain goal.”
Michaela Goldammer, marketing chair for Dakotathon and a senior strategic communications major, said although the amount of money raised during FTK week and during Push Day was “insane,” it was not as important as the impact Dakotathon made on campus.
“I think at the core of it, it got people excited about our organization. It got people excited about raising funds and raising money for people other than themselves,” Goldammer said. “The people that raised the $37,000 this year didn’t raise it for themselves, they raised it for kids that are sick in the hospital.”
Bullerdick said the fundraising success of Push Day this year means a lot to her personally.
“For me it means the world,” she said. “It’s anything for the kids.”