Family Campaign focus is 'Help Grow a Scholar'

President Carol Cartwright helped kick off the 2008-09 Family Campaign last Monday (Feb. 2), marking the 11th year for the annual fund-raising campaign for faculty, staff and retirees.

Alumni Laureate Scholar Katrina Caldwell (orange blouse, center) listens as President Carol Cartwright speaks at the Family Campaign kickoff.

She praised the University community for its commitment to the internal fund-raising campaign, citing the strength of the volunteers and the broad support of faculty, staff and employees. She also stressed the importance of giving this year because of the economic downturn.

“The need is even greater this year that our campus community comes together during the Family Campaign,” she said. “This year’s theme, ‘Help Grow a Scholar,’ resonates with everyone because it gets at the core of our mission–educating students.”

Cartwright thanked the individuals who volunteer to head the Family Campaign efforts for their colleges, divisions, departments and programs. “You’re carrying the flag. You’re the believers who tell others why it is important.”

This year’s Family Campaign goal is to raise $750,000 and achieve 56 percent campus participation.

President Cartwright at the Family Campaign event

Student scholarships focus of Sustaining Tomorrow’s Scholars Fund
The dramatic decline of the financial markets and the bleak economic forecast are impacting some scholarships for students.
“Many of the endowed funds that were recently established will need additional funding from the donors to the spendable portion of the endowment to be awarded for the 2009-10 academic year,” said J. Douglas Smith, president and CEO of the BGSU Foundation Inc. and vice president for University advancement.

This year, more than 500 students could be impacted by the negative returns as a result of the financial markets’ collapse.

The BGSU Foundation’s response, to help ensure scholarships remain available to students, is the creation of the Sustaining Tomorrow’s Scholars Fund, a nonendowed fund dedicated solely to student scholarships. Private gifts donated to the fund will be directed to those scholarships without enough earnings to be awarded.

The foundation already has communicated the issue to many of the scholarship donors, asking them to consider supporting the Sustaining Tomorrow’s Scholars Fund. “We are pleased with the initial response of our donors to this situation, and we are optimistic that we will be able to meet the challenge,” Smith said.

The fund is one of the priority projects for this year’s Family Campaign.

“Faculty, staff and retirees continue to have the opportunity to make a Family Campaign gift to any program or initiative on campus that they believe in,” said Marcia Sloan Latta, senior associate vice president for University advancement. “The benefit of the Family Campaign is having the ability to support programs on campus that are most meaningful to you.”

Because educating students is the core of the University’s mission, Latta asked faculty, staff and retirees to consider a gift to the Sustaining Tomorrow’s Scholars Fund “to ensure our students may continue their education at BGSU.”

“The foundation’s investment portfolio has been solid over the past three-, five- and 10-year periods, with average returns of 6.6, 8.5 and 6.7 percent, respectively,” Smith said. “However, the instability of the financial markets has hurt the foundation’s portfolio most significantly in the past six months. Investment return for the 2008-09 fiscal year, which started July 1, is in a negative position. 

“This is an issue that is not unique to BGSU,” he added. “Institutions across the country and the globe are dealing with the fallout from the economic downturn.”

February 9, 2009