Editor's Note: Dennis Stover is the Regional Vice Chancellor for Advancement at the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee.
It all started as a modest request to fund a student picnic during USF Sarasota-Manatee’s Veteran’s Awareness Week. USF Sarasota-Manatee asked The Patterson Foundation to buy hot dogs and hamburgers for the event, but working with Linda Gould, a coordinator of the Legacy of Valor, we moved the conversation to a more sustainable program that would help fund ongoing unmet needs for our veterans returning to get their degree.
That is how the Veterans Legacy Scholarship Fund was born. In the earliest stages of planning for a new way to help veterans with financial need, USFSM hoped to raise $20,000 by participating in the Unified Legacy of Valor Opportunity created by The Patterson Foundation.
But so much more has resulted from this partnership! Not only did USFSM raise a total of $38,000 with The Patterson Foundation’s matching dollars, but the Veterans Legacy Scholarship Fund is now also backed by the Veterans Legacy Endowment, a permanent fund that will help cover gaps in federal aid and assist our returning military with tuition and other needs, so that they will not have to interrupt their education due to financial hardship.
As a partner with great vision and compassion, The Patterson Foundation agreed that the match funds from the successful Unified Legacy of Valor Opportunity should provide the seed for an endowment that offers a long-term solution to challenges faced by student veterans at USF Sarasota-Manatee. Even more exciting, that decision opened the door to leveraging the gift of an individual donor, Sheri Greenhaus of Cyber M@rketing Services/CRMXchange. Ms. Greenhaus was moved to offer her support to veterans in thanks for their extraordinary service to others.
By combining these private gifts in a permanent endowment, USF Sarasota-Manatee can extend its good works for veterans, and continue to offer scholarships now and in the future. Annual fundraising campaigns will continue to grow the Veterans Legacy Endowment fund to at least a$100,000 targeted endowed fund, assuring that those special people who have put their lives on the line to protect and defend us may achieve their educational goals at USF Sarasota-Manatee.
Learn about these and other concepts used in TPF's approach to philanthropy.
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