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Black Tie Blue Jeans tradition virtually helps Rocky students

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Posted at 5:15 PM, Nov 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-09 19:23:25-05

The Black Tie Blue Jeans event helps many Rocky Mountain College students to go to school.

The event is one of the university's biggest fundraisers and like many others, COVID-19 turned this year's version virtual.

Normally, it's a big party with an auction that draws about 600 people.

Most recently, it's been on campus.

The school and its donors instead celebrated online, Nov. 1-6, for the 33rd annual fundraiser.

The adjustment actually helped connect with more supporters all over the country.

"That support is humbling in my mind," said Tyler Wiltgen, Rocky's vice president for advancement. "Because whenever we were out talking to sponsors or auction donors, you can tell that businesses, people are hurting right now financially. And so for people to step up and support our students, that means so much because it allows these students to go to school and minimize the amount of student debt that they're taking out to achieve their educational dreams. So, it means a lot to us as an institution but it also means so much to our students."

Wiltgen said in a normal year, Black Tie Blue Jeans would raise about $500,000.

He said the administration is happy with it raising about $310,000 this year.