UVA Darden Annual Fund Fuels Potential, Sets Sights on Robust Fiscal Year End
By David Buie-Moltz
The Darden Annual Fund — a catalyst for unlocking potential, facilitating advancement and inspiring innovation — is calling on alumni and friends to contribute their invaluable support by 30 June, the end of the fiscal year.
Learn more about several recent advancements around the University of Virginia Darden School of Business supported by annual giving:
1) Championing Scholars
Unrestricted giving provides more than half of Darden’s scholarships. The Breakthrough Scholars program, devised to support inclusive excellence in finance, exemplifies this. Sukari Brown (MBA ’23), this year’s commencement speaker, now successfully employed in finance, testifies to the transformational power of these contributions. Learn more about her story.
2) Revitalizing Learning and Fostering Excellence
This year, unrestricted funding has given Darden the power to pioneer new educational frontiers. Expanding the School’s academic offerings, Darden faculty have rolled out a variety of innovative courses in diverse fields of study, such as entrepreneurship, digital-age decision-making and sustainability in business.
Courses such as “Navigating Global Disruptions” equip students with an understanding of how global events affect business operations. “Digital Transformation” examines how technology is changing traditional business models. Reflecting Darden’s a commitment to sustainability, the “Business & Climate Change” course underlines the pivotal role of business in the fight against climate change. These new subjects open up new perspectives and prepare Darden students to excel in the dynamic landscape of contemporary business.
At the same time, Darden continues its tradition of fostering academic excellence by bringing top-flight scholars into the community. This year, Darden welcomed 12 new professors, each contributing unique expertise and diverse perspectives. These teachers — with backgrounds spanning strategy, operations, entrepreneurship and ethics — are steadfast in pushing the boundaries of business knowledge.
3) Strengthening the Darden Community
Donations to the annual fund support the Darden Student Association (DSA) and other student groups, offsetting rising event expenses. This backing nurtures a more interlinked community, as evident from a whopping 99 percent of Full-Time MBA students contributing DSA dues this year.
4) Fueling Sustainability Efforts
Donations targeting a greener Grounds have yielded impressive outcomes. By late 2022, Darden reduced paper cup usage by 50 percent and targeted another 50 percent reduction this spring, aspiring for a disposable-cup-less First Coffee by fall 2023. Darden now also composts 300 pounds of coffee waste weekly.
This progress towards a sustainable future can surge with more support. Darden will roll out a new sustainability initiative this fall to enlarge the sustainability curriculum and add more real-life case studies for students, ensuring their grasp of sustainability issues impacting business choices.
But the sustainability measures don’t stop there. To achieve Darden’s aim of reducing waste by 30 percent by 2030, composting pilots are underway on the Grounds and Ivy Gardens. Moreover, in pursuit of sustainably sourcing half of the food by 2030 and trimming greenhouse gas emissions, collaborations with UVA’s Sustainable Food Collaborative and Nitrogen Working Group are in progress.
This wave of green initiatives underscores Darden’s dedication to its 2030 sustainability goals, designed to lessen the School’s environmental impact and promote a greener future.
Support the Annual Fund
The Darden Annual Fund enables the School to seize new opportunities and honor its mission of educating the business leaders of tomorrow. As 30 June nears, Darden alumni and friends are encouraged to donate now and become a part of this transformative journey.
The University of Virginia Darden School of Business prepares responsible global leaders through unparalleled transformational learning experiences. Darden’s graduate degree programs (MBA, MSBA and Ph.D.) and Executive Education & Lifelong Learning programs offered by the Darden School Foundation set the stage for a lifetime of career advancement and impact. Darden’s top-ranked faculty, renowned for teaching excellence, inspires and shapes modern business leadership worldwide through research, thought leadership and business publishing. Darden has Grounds in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the Washington, D.C., area and a global community that includes 18,000 alumni in 90 countries. Darden was established in 1955 at the University of Virginia, a top public university founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819 in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Associate Director, Editorial & Media Relations
Darden School of Business
University of Virginia