Alumni donors have students covered, and Rutgers has the tags to prove it. During Rutgers’ first-ever TAG (Teaching Annual Giving) Day held in April, volunteers marked areas around each university location where alumni make an impact by giving back. The result? Tags  covered almost every corner of Rutgers because alumni donations enhance nearly every part of the university and the student experience. Philanthropic spirit, scarlet pride, and student-alumni connections were everywhere on TAG Day.

At Rutgers University–New Brunswick and Rutgers University–Camden, students proudly wore “This student thinks donors rock” buttons. Alumni donors joined the fun by donning buttons that read, “I give because students rock.”

At Rutgers University–Newark, students paused to read tags on their way to class and learned that many of the signature events that make their experience unique, such as jazz concerts and the Marion Thompson Wright Lecture Series, are possible because of donors.

As more and more tags popped up, it became clear to students that the computer labs they use, the student organizations they belong to, the scholarships they receive, and even the classroom chairs they sit on exist because of alumni who pay it forward.

The goal of TAG Day is to educate students about what it means to be part of the Rutgers community and to stay connected to the university after graduation. From the moment students step onto campus, they begin their journey to becoming a member of the Rutgers University Alumni Association.

Lauren Lachocki, assistant director of student philanthropy at Rutgers University Foundation and event organizer, says, “With a variety of messages printed on them, the tags basically illustrate to students, ‘Tag—you’re it! You are the next generation of graduates that future Rutgers students will rely on, just as you now benefit from the generosity of alumni in ways both big and small.’” 

When students graduate and it’s their turn to give, the hope is that they will remember the day they realized their Rutgers experience rocked because alumni donors rock. It will be up to them, after all, to keep the tradition going by rocking on.