The Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry between the University of Georgia and Auburn University has moved beyond the football field to the field of philanthropy. The rivals are participating in Beat Week, a one-week giving challenge between the two universities. The 2021 matchup marks the second time the two universities have joined together for a giving challenge leading up to the annual UGA vs. Auburn football game.

Alumni, students, parents, faculty, staff, parents and fans are encouraged to join the Beat Week challenge. The institution with the highest number of gifts gets bragging rights as the Beat Week winners — the challenge is for the overall number of gifts, not the total amount given. Each donation counts as a separate gift, so if a donor supports one fund today and another later this week, it will count as two gifts. Anyone who donates should consider splitting a $10 gift into two $5 gifts. Gifts made from Monday, Oct. 4, until midnight Saturday, Oct. 9, will count in the total.  

To up the stakes, UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) and the College of Agriculture at Auburn are going head-to-head to see which college gets the most gifts during Beat Week. The winning college’s dean will get to crown the other dean with their spirit colors.

“I’m looking forward to the opportunity to beat Auburn both on and off the field during Beat Week — I’m certainly hoping that, with the help of CAES donors, I don’t have to wear that orange and navy,” said Dean Nick T. Place.

The student group is focused on raising funds for the CAES Student Emergency fund, which directly helps students experiencing a financial hardship.

“I am proud to support CAES because I see our alumni giving so consistently and with enthusiasm,” said Kelly Tims, a 2020 graduate with dual bachelor’s degrees in entomology and environmental science and a current doctoral candidate in the Department of Entomology. “I see the ways donations can affect my life and the lives of other students, so I’m excited I can give a little back to the college that made UGA feel like home.”

Gifts can be made to any UGA or CAES fund. The CAES Deans’ Promise, which provides experiential learning opportunities for CAES students, is available in the dropdown menu on the Beat Week giving site.

For anyone interested in other funds, donors can search for an academic department, specific scholarship, Extension fund or other support area.

Each gift to a CAES fund will support students while helping CAES move ahead of the Auburn College of Agriculture in the giving challenge.

For more information, contact the CAES Office of Development and Alumni Relations at 706-542-8819 or

CAES Student Philanthropy Council members (back row, from left) Kaitlyn Hart, Cory Yarbrough, Tyler Hortman, Grant Bennett, Emily Posas, Kelly Tims, (front row, from left) Madison Ristroph and Audri Crews show off the CAES buttons students will receive for making a gift during Beat Week.
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