University of Northern Iowa launches athletics fundraiser


(Cedar Falls, IA) -- The University of Northern Iowa Athletics Department has launched a fundraising campaign called UNI to offset pandemic-related losses.

UNI Athletics is facing a $2.5 million dollar shortfall. The department has cut pay for coaches and staff and has suspended incentive bonuses. UNI is leaving several vacant positions open and has a spending freeze in place.

UNI says the first phase of the UNI Fight Initiative brought in more than $300,000.

Letter from UNI Director of Athletics, David Harris:

When difficult times arise, so does our spirit of sacrifice, determination, and resiliency. The COVID-19 pandemic has made 2020 a challenging year, especially for us in collegiate athletics. Sports have been an important part of our daily lives and something we're all missing right now.

It was recently announced that the MVC and MVFC made the difficult decision to postpone fall sports competitions to the spring. While this news was difficult, it was the right decision as our top priority has been and will continue to be the health and safety of our student-athletes, coaches and staff. While we work on plans to resume competitions, the pandemic has created significant financial challenges for the athletics department. The department currently faces a revenue shortfall of over $2.5 million.

Many of you have asked how you can help Panther Athletics during these unprecedented times. I'm pleased to announce that we are launching theUNI FIGHT INITIATIVE. This initiative has been created to support our student-athletes, coaches, staff and other essential needs of the Athletics Department as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

We are asking our Panther Family to support theUNI FIGHT INITIATIVE. The full financial impact of the pandemic isn't known yet, but your contribution will help us continue to place the health and welfare of our student-athletes first while providing them with a first class experience. We are asking you to do this above and beyond your current giving to Panther Athletics.

We've always been committed to the student-athlete experience, no matter what challenges are thrown our way. What makes UNI such a special place is the people - our student-athletes, our coaches, our staff, and most importantly you, our loyal supporters. This is a tough time for everyone, but together we will get through this and be better because of it. If you are able to contribute to this initiative in any way, it will be greatly appreciated. Every dollar truly does count and makes a difference.

Thank you for all that you do for Panther Athletics!

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