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USD Women in Philanthropy

Uniting Women to Make an Impact

More than a single program or organization, the University of South Dakota Women in Philanthropy network is a movement—a uniting of like-minded women using diverse talents, backgrounds and experiences to enhance the university and positively impact its students.

"When women come together, they get things done." - USD President Sheila Gestring

Inspired by a shared mission, USD Women in Philanthropy is providing a platform where women can pool their resources, passion and philanthropic insight to make a difference not only in the lives of students but also in their respective communities. By providing opportunities for engagement, women discover their passions and interests and connect with other women to become visionary investors supporting the University of South Dakota.

USD Women in Philanthropy is making a difference far beyond financial contributions. Together, we are:

  • Giving women a collective voice at the University of South Dakota.
  • Fostering invaluable multi-generational mentorship opportunities.
  • Celebrating a powerful and accomplished network of USD women and empowering them to lead.
  • Creating opportunities for students to reach their potential.

USD Women in Philanthropy's first initiatives include Elevate, a USD Women's Basketball leadership development program, and Charlie's Cupboard, an on-campus food pantry for students coming to USD's campus in the fall of 2020.

2021 USD Women in Philanthropy Event

This event was a success because of supporters like you! Whether you attended in-person or tuned into the livestream, your involvement made the whole day special. To those that weren't able to make it, we are sorry to have missed you. But don't fret, the 2021 USD Women in Philanthropy Event livestream is available for your viewing below or on our YouTube channel!

If you would like to make a gift to support USD Women in Philanthropy, click here.

USD Women in Philanthropy Application

USD Women in Philanthropy (WIP) is excited to announce that we will be accepting applications starting March 7, 2022, through April 15, 2022!

The application can be found here along with further details on the criteria and selection process. For additional questions or to submit your application, please contact us at

What is the application timeline?
Applications to WIP are open once a year. The timeline for 2022 is as follows:

-Opens: March 7, 2022
-Closes: April 15, 2022
-Selections made: April-May 2022

Who can apply for WIP funding and how many new initiatives are selected each year?
The WIP application is open university-wide, and there is not a pre-determined number of initiatives that will be supported each year. WIP aims to have a diverse group of investments across campus and will consider how each supported initiative aligns with our mission and the strategic priorities of the university.

Can applicants apply for ongoing or multi-year support?
Yes. WIP is open to reviewing initiatives in need of one-time support or, in some cases, ongoing support. Most importantly, whether it is a larger scale concept that needs an initial “kickstart” or a smaller scale project, WIP is looking for a plan that clearly and specifically outlines both the short-term and long-term strategy. WIP will favor applications that are well thought out and include realistic, specific and quantifiable goals.

2022-2023 Application

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Your gift will have a lasting impact on the lives of USD students!

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