May 29, 2023

University Launches Founders Day Challenge

In celebration of our 108th founding anniversary on March 14, the Office of Annual Giving has launched the second annual Founders Day Challenge.

The challenge aims to raise $108,000 in two weeks for the Fund for Mary Washington, the University’s single largest source of unrestricted private support. Gifts to the Fund enable UMW to support students, programs and other needs not covered by the state’s operating budget.

During last year’s six-week Founders Day Challenge, 926 donors came together to give more than $127,000. Advancement staff decided to shorten this year’s Challenge to make it even more exciting. All gifts to the Fund for Mary Washington between March 1 and March 14 (Founders Day) will count toward the total. Faculty and staff are asked to help spread the word using the Challenge hashtag, #EaglesGive.

The Fund for Mary Washington is just one of seven areas of priority within UMW’s $50-million Mary Washington First Campaign. The campaign, which will close June 30, 2016, has garnered generous support from more than 16,000 donors since it was launched in 2011.

UMW was established as the State Normal and Industrial School for Women at Fredericksburg on March 14, 1908. It was the second institution in the state devoted exclusively to the training of teachers for public schools, after the Normal School for Women at Farmville, now Longwood University.

For more information about the founding of UMW, past Founders Day celebrations, the Challenge, or to make a donation, please visit To share your Mary Washington story in honor of Founders Day, please complete this short form.