Penn Champions Club Specific Questions
What is the Penn Champions Club?
The Penn Champions Club (or PCC) is the newly branded development and alumni relations arm for Penn Athletics. It has been designed to positively impact Penn student-athletes and Penn athletic supporters. The Penn Champions Club’s main goal is to provide student-athletes the resources they need to be champions in the classroom, in the community and in competition, while providing donors unparalleled experiences.
The Penn Champions club will function almost identically as “Penn Athletics Development” has, but just under a new name.
Why brand the athletics development office?
Looking across the landscape of college athletics, most Division I universities have elected to brand their respective athletic development office as a way to create a broader sense of community among its constituent base as well as to more easily market the department’s fundraising priorities. It has been proven that by taking this step, over time, universities have been able to grow donor bases; increase donation revenue; and expose alumni and friends to unparalleled experiences and tradition, all while improving the student-athlete experience.
What are the goals of the Penn Champions Club?
The ultimate goal is to continue the Penn Athletics mission of holistically developing our 1,000 student-athletes by providing them a world-class educational and athletic experience. We will accomplish this by creating a more robust community of Penn Athletics supporters who share the common bond of helping execute against the department’s priorities. The Penn Champions Club is the chief vessel that will help us achieve this.
Can I still direct my support to a specific sport(s)?
Absolutely! One of the more impressive things about Penn is that it offers 33 Varsity sports and we have incredible alumni, parents and friends that have developed strong affinities for an individual sport(s). Under the Penn Champions Club brand, any donor to the Penn Athletics annual fund will still be able to direct his or her support to the sport(s) of their choosing.
Do non-annual fund gifts to Athletics count for membership in the Penn Champions Club?
The lifeblood of Penn Athletics is the annual fund. Your annual gift(s) across our 33 sports goes to offset the operational costs associated with running a competitive Division I program, so we heavily encourage all our donors to first make a gift to the annual fund before making a donation to a capital project, endowment fund, or a planned gift. That said, any gift to athletics will make the donor(s) eligible for membership in the Penn Champions Club.
When is the best time to make a gift to the Penn Champions Club?
Today! Please consider making a gift today to support Penn’s 1,000 student-athletes.
Is the Penn Champions Club “giving year” the same as the calendar year?
No. The “giving year” runs concurrent with the University’s fiscal year, which begins July 1 and ends June 30. Making a gift during that timeframe makes you a current donor.
In addition, gifts must be post marked December 31 at the latest to qualify as being tax-deductible for a given calendar year.
What is the impact of my gift to the Penn Champions Club?
Your donation directly impacts the experience of Penn’s nearly 1,000 student-athletes. By making a contribution to your desired area of the Penn Champions Club, you help support areas of need such as academic support, travel, equipment, recruiting, sports performance, sports medicine and in some cases general athletic department expenses.
Do my gifts qualify for the Ben Franklin Society (BFS)?
Yes. All gifts directed toward annual funds will count toward the baseline minimum of $2,500 to be considered a BFS member. All gifts made toward capital projects, endowments and planned giving vehicles do not count toward BFS membership.
The above holds true for Young Ben Franklin Society membership as well. Any annual gift to the Penn Champions Club will count toward the baseline annual giving commitment relative to years since graduation.
What is the R. Tait McKenzie Society (RTM)?
Named for Penn's first Professor of Physical Education (1904-1929), the R. Tait McKenzie Society is Penn Athletics' leadership giving society. It is comprised of former student-athletes, Penn alumni, current and former Penn parents, and fans of varsity and club athletic program.
Any donor whose total giving equals or surpasses $2,500 to the Division of Recreation and Intercollegiate Athletics in a given Fiscal Year is eligible for entry into the RTM Society.
Members of the R. Tait McKenzie Society are eligible for hospitality access at all home football games, including food and beverages one hour prior to kick off through halftime.
What is Above the Rim (ATR)?
Above the Rim is Penn Basketball's hospitality opportunity for donors who make leadership gifts to Basketball. Like the R. Tait MaKenzie Society, ATR is comprised of former student-athletes, alumni, current and former parents, and fans of Penn basketball.
Any donor whose total giving to Basketball equals or surpasses $2,500 in a given Fiscal Year is eligible for entry into ATR hospitality. ATR Hospitality is offered one hour prior to tipoff through halftime and includes food and beverages.
Is my contribution tax deductible?
Yes. All gifts to the Penn Champions Club are eligible for tax deduction, but please always consult your tax advisor.
How do I make a gift to the Penn Champions Club?
You can make your gift by phone, mail, fax or online.
Phone: (215) 898-4717
Fax: (215) 573-9142
235 S. 33rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19087
Can I pledge my support to the Penn Champions Club by making multiple payments throughout the year?
Yes! You can set-up recurring giving that allows you to make a gift weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually.
For example: a $250 annual gift becomes a $4.81 weekly gift, $20.83 monthly gift, $62.50 quarterly gift. Please call our office at (215) 898-4717 or visit our online giving page to utilize this option.
What is a matching gift?
Most companies are willing to match the amount of an employee gift to the Penn Champions Club and in many cases companies will exponentially match an employee’s charitable donations at a 2 to 1 or even 3 to 1 ratio. Please click here to find out if your company provides a match.
Can I set up a payroll deduction to make a contribution?
Yes, but unfortunately this option is open to University of Pennsylvania employees only. Please contact the Penn Champions Club for employee payroll deduction forms.