Class of 2013 boosts scholarship fund with its gift

Last year's graduating seniors passed over more typical class gift options -- such as benches, plaques, art work -- choosing instead to leave some scholarship cash for fellow students.

That scholarship fund got a big boost recently when the Class of 2013 decided to direct its gift to the same place.

"We talked about the benefits of a continuing endowment with the leaders of the Senior Class Council, and they were immediately on board," said Mary Evanson, director of annual and special gifts for the ISU Foundation.

Thus far, nearly 400 members of the Class of 2013 have pledged more than $30,000 to the scholarship fund. Evanson expects that number to grow, as student fundraisers continue making calls to the senior class. Last year's class pledged $45,400.

An endowment must reach a $25,000 minimum before scholarships may be awarded, Evanson said. She anticipates that level will be attained soon, as the current class pays on its pledges. The award on a $25,000 endowment is about $1,200 annually.

The Senior Class Gift Scholarship fund will provide scholarships for students who have reached their senior year at Iowa State. There aren't as many scholarships available to seniors as other students, Evanson explained. ISU's financial aid office will determine how the scholarship funds will be allocated.

"The generosity of the Class of 2012 and 2013 is incredible and speaks volumes about how important scholarship funding is to our students," Evanson added. "Seniors giving back to their alma mater to help other students -- it’s philanthropy in its truest form and it is inspiring to see so many recent graduates get involved."