As an undergraduate at the University of Notre Dame, Madeline Chiavini sampled a wide variety of courses. When she graduated in 2010 with a degree in literature and philosophy and a passion for the workings of the financial world, however, she knew she had to fill in some gaps in order to qualify for a graduate program in finance. So she entered the masters’ program at the McIntire School of Commerce.
She spent last year earning a degree that fulfilled the business and accounting requirements she needed to enter the finance program at Claremont McKenna College in California.
Chiaviani, who was born in California and grew up in Nevada, spent just a year at U.Va., but it was one of the most important years of her life.
“I received such a wonderful education at U.Va.,” Chiaviani said. “My professors still help me and respond when I reach out to them, and I made lifelong friendships with fellow students. I think U.Va. is a really special place.”
As an alumna from so many institutions, Chiaviani receives frequent donor solicitations. She still has debt remaining from those institutions, and, to her, it didn’t make sense to give back before paying off her loans. However, when she found out that some generous U.Va. alumni would match her modest donation, Chiaviani decided to make an exception to her personal policy.
“I realize that I have this policy, but I feel very indebted and connected to U.Va., even though I was there for only a year,” she said. “I felt like if I gave $20, that wouldn’t make any difference, but if someone matches it with $100, then I feel like this might actually make a difference.”