Wild birds at the Student Farm in UC Davis on Monday, March 22, 2021.
Wild birds at the Student Farm in UC Davis on Monday, March 22, 2021.

A Message From the Dean - April 2021

Springing into action with Give Day and new students

Spring is a traditional time of renewal, a reawakening of life. We see this through the new growth in our fields and greenhouses, the births happening in our barns and from the energy in our communities as people start to enjoy the outdoors. This year feels even more renewing as our society rebounds from the pandemic, and we are experiencing that here as our town and campus slowly come back to life.

One of the ways we can see the vitality of this season is through the spirit of philanthropy shown by many individuals this past Give Day. This year, the campus raised close to $3.5 million from more than 5,600 individual gifts. Donations came in from 46 states and 16 countries, with the final tally beating last year’s record by nearly $1 million.

Each year the people in our college find new and more creative ways to step up and encourage others to support students, programs and equipment needs. Challenge gifts, which donors promise to match after a certain number of gifts have been pledged, are one such way. This year we had a dozen challenge gifts, from several generous donors listed below.

  • Animal Science Dairy Challenge provided by Ted Bliss, ’06
  • Bohart Museum Challenge provided by Helen North-Root, ’69
  • Food Science Alumni and Friends Challenge provided by Kathleen Nelson Feicht, ’73, and John Feicht
  • Jim Thayer Soil Science Fund provided by Michael and Renee Singer and Randy and Susan Southard
  • Lohr Experiential Learning Challenge supporting Human Ecology provided by alumna Cynthia Lohr, ’89
  • Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology Experiential Learning Challenge provided by Bruce and Carolyn Lowenthal
  • Plant Pathology Armstrong Ranch Equipment provided by Richard and Katherine Bostock
  • Ted Bradshaw Scholars Program provided by Kamaljeet Khaira, ’93, and Ravinder Khaira, ’90
  • Virodome Sculpture for Plant Pathology provided by Mark Young, Ph.D., ’87, and Linda Young, Ph.D., ’87
  • Viticulture and Enology Student Support Challenge provided by Susan Ebeler, M.S., ’85, Ph.D., ’93, and John Ebeler
  • Viticulture and Enology Student Support Challenge provided by Susan Toulson, ’82

Gifts like these provide our departments and the college with crucial support and give us the capacity to grow and expect greater from our students, staff and faculty. Working together is how we will meet the challenges society faces and create new opportunities for future generations. You can learn more about some of our Give Day success stories here. Thank you to all who participated.

I also want to congratulate our incoming transfer students, who were recently admitted to UC Davis and our college. We don’t have specific numbers on how many of these new Aggies will be joining us just yet, but we do extend our warmest welcome to them as we plan for in-person instruction in the fall and the valuable social engagement and personal growth that comes with being on campus. We have so much to celebrate this spring and look forward to seeing our community renewed. 

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