Auburn Unity T-shirt revenue becomes scholarship money for 30 students

Published: February 25, 2021
Font Size

Article body

Thirty Auburn University students have received a Together We Will Scholarship.

A scholarship fund, aimed at helping underrepresented students at Auburn, was established last fall when the Auburn Athletics Task Force on Inclusion and Race Relations created the Together We Will Initiative to support and advance the Auburn Family in its quest toward positive action on diversity, equity and inclusion.

The Auburn Unity symbol—a Black hand interlocking a white hand—was created and placed on athletic uniforms, equipment, warm-up gear and travel bags, as well as T-shirts, which were sold to generate monies for scholarships.

With proceeds from sales of the official Auburn Unity T-shirt generating $30,000, 30 students received a $1,000 scholarship to offset tuition. Joffery Gaymon, vice president of enrollment services, said the university agreed to match the T-shirt revenue “to support student success,” awarding each student an additional $1,000 in Dining Dollars to apply toward dining costs.

“These are the first students, but they won’t be the last,” added Gaymon. “As long as there is financial support for the Together We Will Scholarship Fund, we will make awards. We want students to enjoy the Auburn experience and focus on finishing their degree.”

Auburn men’s basketball coach Bruce Pearl has championed the Together We Will Initiative and scholarship fund since both were established.

“I want to encourage friends and donors who love Auburn and want to see it reach its full potential by supporting the Together We Will Scholarship Fund,” he said. “For these 30 students, this is just the beginning, but our way of saying we want you here at Auburn and we want to help you be successful.”

The scholarship fund was one of 40 campus projects that sought donations on Tiger Giving Day, Feb. 24. Athletics joined the Office of Inclusion and Diversity with “the goal of supporting and advancing the Auburn Family in its quest to shape a more diverse, inclusive and equitable campus community.” The $20,000 goal was surpassed by early morning. By the end of the day, $287,400 had been raised from 262 donors.

Prior to Tiger Giving Day, the fund received a substantial boost with a $250,000 gift.

“This kind of support shows just how much the Auburn Family wants to help our students,” said Gaymon. “We will be able to assist so many more students now and in the future.”

Auburn University is a nationally ranked land grant institution recognized for its commitment to world-class scholarship, interdisciplinary research with an elite, top-tier Carnegie R1 classification, life-changing outreach with Carnegie’s Community Engagement designation and an undergraduate education experience second to none. Auburn is home to more than 30,000 students, and its faculty and research partners collaborate to develop and deliver meaningful scholarship, science and technology-based advancements that meet pressing regional, national and global needs. Auburn’s commitment to active student engagement, professional success and public/private partnership drives a growing reputation for outreach and extension that delivers broad economic, health and societal impact.