Tag: scholarships

Give. Share. Watch. Live 10-hour webcast highlights fourth annual Giving Day

For everyone who has ever wondered what Lawrence University is all about, a LIVE, 10-hour webcast Wednesday, Oct. 11 will provide an insider’s look at some of the people and programs that make the university an interesting and vibrant place.

Lawrence’s fourth annual Giving Day event, which will be webcast live at go.lawrence.edu/givingday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., features interviews with faculty, administrators, accomplished alumni and students, including some who currently are studying abroad. There also will be nearly a dozen live musical performances, hands-on demonstrations and maybe a surprise guest appearance or two.Giving Day studio

Kasey Corrado, Lawrence’s social media director, will be back in the hostess chair for the fourth year in a row. She’ll be joined by Ken Anselment, dean of admissions and financial aid, who returns for his second stint as co-host.

“Even though this is our fourth annual Giving Day and we’ve gotten into a bit of a groove when it comes to the live show, there is still that undeniable excitement about what is going to take place when the red light goes on,” said Corrado, who calls Giving Day “her favorite day of the year at Lawrence.”

“I love meeting with guests and showcasing how they contribute to the Lawrence community in a variety of ways” she added. “We’ve put together another wonderful line-up of student musicians, leaders and athletes, alumni and staff. I’m looking forward to sharing their stories with our audience.”

Anselment, whose lone battle scar from his initial Giving Day hosting duties — a scratchy throat from over talking — admitted that will serve as a helpful reminder to keep the focus on the guests.

“Giving Day is about letting members of the Lawrence community shine in all their multi-interested, multi-talented ways,” said Anselment. “My job is to set them up and let them be at their brightest.”

It’s the surprises that come with hours of planned, yet improvised, programming, where some of the best moments happen, said Anselment.

STudent musicians performing on Giving Day
Musical performances are always a staple of Lawrence’s Giving Day webcast.

“I knew last year the day was going to be special during our very first segment when President Burstein picked up the pom-poms and shook them right along with the dance team. Now that’s commitment,” he said, adding that getting lifted by Lawrence dance instructor Margaret Paek— who is about half his size — was a lesson in grace and physics “I won’t soon forget.”

An eclectic cast of Lawrence “celebrities” scheduled to visit with Corrado and Anselment include:
President Mark Burstein

Gary Vaughan, discussing Lawrence’s innovation and entrepreneurship program, including a presentation from a member of last spring’s winning team at The Pitch Competition.

Amy Ongiri from the film studies program, with staff videographer Chris Gore-Gammon, who will give a virtual reality demonstration.

Copeland Woodruff talking opera

Coaches from the athletic department

Biologist Israel Del Toro discussing the Pollinator Project.

Performances by the Faculty Brass, Cantala women’s choir, an ensemble of 19 cellists, and others.

The student bands Sol Studios and The Embers as well as singer Bernard Lilly, a student from the Academy of Music and the student duet Jerry Wang and Eva Tourangeau.

Garrett Katerzynske, Lawrence’s director of video production, not only juggled most of the proverbial chain saws in lining up the guests for this year’s production, he also steps into the director’s chair for the first time.

“The live show is a marathon of technical demands and I’ll be positioned at the epicenter of the creative storm, directing crew back stage and talent on screen,” said Katerzynske. “Beautiful moments and unexpected issues can unfold simultaneously and if we’re lucky, we’ll spin problems into happy accidents. The cameras keep rolling and the results are always entertaining.”

In scouring the campus the past several months for guests, Katerzynske said he uncovered some incredible stories and witnessed many remarkable performances.

A chemistry demonstration on Giving Day
Hands-on demonstrations always add an element of the unknown to the Giving Day webcast.

“The faculty and students on this campus surprise me every year,” he said. “I can’t wait to watch everything come together in the studio.”

Lawrence held its first Giving Day in 2014 as a one-day-only fundraising event for alumni and friends to show their support for Lawrence, its programs and students. Since that first event, Giving Day has generated more than $3.7 million from more than 6,400 students, alumni, parents, faculty, staff, and friends of the university.

Many of the guests appearing on the webcast are grateful beneficiaries of the generosity of Giving Day donors and serve as examples of the way funding assists faculty, students and programs on campus.

As in previous years, Lawrence Giving Day 2017 has been made possible by a generous group of alumni, parents and friends who have committed to be “Game Changers,” providing matching funds as motivation for others to support the college.

“Giving Day’s goal isn’t just to raise money, although that is an important aspect,” said Kayla Schumacher, Lawrence’s director of annual giving. “This is a chance for everyone in the Lawrence community to come together for 24 hours and celebrate the things they care about here.

“The entire community is encouraged to take advantage of the fantastic giving challenges on Giving Day,” Schumacher added. “We hope participation in the day continues growing this year as more members of our community choose to give back. For the fourth time, Lawrence will show the world what we can accomplish when we all come together in just one day.”

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Fox Cities students to benefit from Lawrence scholarship initiative; matching gift campaign raises nearly $52M

Mission accomplished.

Less than 15 months after presented a challenge of matching a $25 million gift from an anonymous donor for student scholarships, Lawrence University has more than met the challenge of its “Full Speed to Full Need” initiative.

Paulson-family_newsblog
The Paulson family — Sarah, Nick ’14, Tom, Mary and Erik ’16 — have established a scholarship that will target students in their hometown of Kaukauna.

Several recent gifts pushed the match total to $26.9 million, enabling Lawrence to establish an endowment of just under $52 million that will be used exclusively for scholarships to help meet students’ demonstrated financial need.

During the Full Speed to Full Need campaign, 48 new student scholarships were created, including one by a Kaukauna family that will directly benefit local students.

The Paulson Family Scholarship, established by Tom and Mary Paulson, and their three children, Sarah, Nick and Erik, will provide the full demonstrated financial need for four years to a Kaukauna High School graduate attending Lawrence.

With a focus on high-need applicants, the scholarship will be awarded once each year to a student for a total of up to four recipients. The goal after four years is a freshman, sophomore, junior and senior will attend Lawrence as a Paulson Scholar.

In the absence of a qualified student from Kaukauna High School, the full-need scholarship will be awarded to a student from any Fox Valley high school.

“Having a local family support Fox Cities’ students is extremely moving to me,” said Lawrence President Mark Burstein. “While Lawrence attracts applicants from across the country and around the world, we are honored that every year many local residents choose Lawrence. The Paulson Family Scholarship will help us attract and support excellent students from our own back yard.”

Tom Paulson said he wanted to create the scholarship in part because “Lawrence is often overlooked due to the financial barrier.”

“Our vision is to make Lawrence accessible to motivated students who may not have the financial means for a Lawrence education,” said Paulson, who graduated from Lawrence as a non-traditional student at the age of 32 in 1993 thanks in part to the financial support he received from the college.

Paulson-Scholarship_newsblog2Beyond Tom, the Paulson family connection to Lawrence includes son Nick, a 2014 Lawrence graduate who is employed at the college as a residence hall director and campus life student organizations coordinator, and son Erik, a senior at Lawrence. Sarah is a graduate of St. Norbert College. Like their parents, Nick, Erik and Sarah are all Kaukauna High School graduates.

Tom Paulson enrolled at Lawrence on a part-time basis in 1983 through a tuition remission program set up with the Institute of Paper Chemistry, where he was employed as a research technician. When the IPC relocated from Appleton to Georgia Tech in 1989, he and his wife remained in town but were left without the tuition remission program. Students must be enrolled full time to be eligible for scholarships and grants at Lawrence.

“The creative financial assistance Lawrence brought to the table enabled me to continue my education,” said Paulson, who re-enrolled in 1989 while also working full time as lab manager at Integrated Paper Services. “My professors were extremely generous and sensitive to my needs in balancing full-time work, class schedule, lab schedules and my family life. I can’t envision this type of accommodation at any other institution.”

“While Lawrence attracts applicants from across the country and around the world, we are honored that every year many local residents choose Lawrence. The Paulson Family Scholarship will help us attract and support excellent students from our own back yard.”
— President Mark Burstein

Paulson said Lawrence’s style of education and its focus on fostering creativity were important factors in his two sons following in his footsteps.

“Building strong personal bonds with administrators, professors and peers is vital for success academically, personally and professionally,” said Paulson. “Both of my sons thrived at Lawrence and have become critical thinkers with a passion for learning.”

Since announcing the Full Speed to Full Need matching gift challenge in September 2014, Lawrence received a total of 426 gifts. The support for the scholarship initiative was as broad as it was swift, with more than half the donors (236) contributing $500 or less. The college did receive 48 gifts of $100,000 or more, including seven of $1 million or more.

“When we embarked on this $25 million challenge, we thought it would take five years to accomplish,” said Cal Husmann, vice president for alumni, development and communications. “We are amazed that we were able to raise this amount of money in 15 months. We are so honored and inspired by the response of the Lawrence community who contributed to this initiative which makes Lawrence more affordable to more students. Every gift of every size makes a difference.”

For the 2015-16 academic year, 69 percent of Lawrence’s 1,500 students are receiving need-based financial aid packages that average $35,483.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

A record breaker: Lawrence sets single-year fundraising mark

Lawrence University students may not realize it, but they have cause to celebrate. They will be the primary beneficiaries of a record-setting fundraising year by the college.

In the second year of Mark Burstein’s presidency, Lawrence set a one-year fundraising record with $34.7 million for the recently completed 2014-15 fiscal year. The previous high mark, $31.4 million, was established in 2008.furnraising-record_newsblog_1

As part of the overall fundraising total, the college also broke the record set last year for the Lawrence Fund, the college’s annual giving program, with $3.8 million.

More than 62 percent of the record fundraising total was designated for scholarships to support Lawrence’s “Full Speed to Full Need” campaign launched last year. The sole purpose of this focused effort is to provide financial aid to students of limited means. The college since has raised $22.6 million toward the full scholarship fund match.

“This record fundraising year is not only a tribute to President Burstein’s clear vision for Lawrence, but also a tribute to the generosity of spirit of those who make up the Lawrence community — students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, friends of the college and trustees,” said Susan Stillman Kane ’72, chair of the Lawrence Board of Trustees.

“The central theme of Mark Burstein’s vision, the value of the liberal arts and the importance of our educational mission in this rapidly changing world,” Kane added, “is enhanced by his goals of making a Lawrence education affordable for all students, sustaining a balanced university budget and creating an environment where a diverse student population can thrive. This resounding affirmation of his vision and the outpouring of philanthropic support this past year is unparalleled.”

Lawrence enjoyed a jump in its alumni donor participation rate (37 percent), the college’s first increase since 2004. Nationally, private baccalaureate arts and science colleges have seen the  average alumni donor participation rate drop every year from 2002-2014. According to the 2014 Voluntary Support of Education Survey, Lawrence’s alumni donor participation rate was nearly four percent above the national average, ranking 46th nationally among 204 peer institutions.

The college also saw a small increase in its retention rate, which measures the portion of prior year alumni donors who gave again the following year. At 80.3 percent, it was Lawrence’s second-highest mark since 2004. According to Target Analytics Index of Higher Education, the median retention rate for colleges and universities is 62 percent.

“This record fundraising year is not only a tribute to President Burstein’s clear vision for Lawrence, but also a tribute to the generosity of spirit of those who make up the Lawrence community…the outpouring of philanthropic support this past year is unparalleled.”
— Susan Stillman Kane ’72, chair of the Board of Trustees

“This is tremendous news because it provides a clear demonstration of how highly engaged and supportive the alumni community and friends of Lawrence are in securing the college’s future,” said Charles Saunders, ’84, a member of the Lawrence Board of Trustees and outgoing president of the Founders Club, a gift club which recognizes donors who contribute gifts of $1.000 or more annually to the Lawrence Fund. “This allows us to make significant progress on maintaining our affordability, which is the primary issue facing colleges and universities today.”

In Forbes’ 2015 Grateful Grads Index, which ranks colleges by the median amount of private donations per student over a 10-year period, Lawrence ranked 63rd nationally among all colleges and universities and was the highest ranked among Wisconsin schools.fundraising-record_newblog_2

The Lawrence Fund provides close to seven percent of the college’s annual operating budget and helps bridge the gap between what students pay in tuition and actual operating costs. The Lawrence Fund, along with endowment earnings, help reduce each student’s tuition by more than $10,000 per year. In addition to providing student grants and scholarships, the Lawrence Fund also supports everything from classroom resource and athletic equipment to sheet music for conservatory students.

The record-setting fundraising year included another milestone for the college, with membership in the Lawrence-Downer Legacy Circle crossing the 1,000-member threshold. At the end of the 2014-15 fiscal year, membership in the college’s planned giving program jumped by nearly 11 percent over the previous year, growing to 1,016 members.

“The act of including Lawrence in one’s estate plans is arguably the most profound endorsement anyone can make,” said Dave Mitchell, ’71, legacy gift planning co-chair of the Lawrence-Downer Legacy Circle. “The fact that membership in the Legacy Circle increased by more than 10 percent speaks volumes about Lawrence’s special place in our hearts.”

For the third consecutive year, the Lawrence Fund enjoyed 100 percent participation from all 32 members of the Lawrence Board of Trustees as well as all 31 members of the Lawrence University Alumni Association Board of Directors.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College” and Fiske’s Guide to Colleges 2016. Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Outgoing Lawrence University board chair receives surprise honor: $1M scholarship fund named in his honor

Terry Franke_newsblog
Terry Franke ’68

As parting gifts go, Terry Franke could not have asked for a more meaningful one.

Franke, the outgoing chair of Lawrence University’s Board of Trustees, received a surprise going away present at the board’s recent Spring meeting: The establishment of the Terry and Mary Franke Scholarship Fund, courtesy of a $1 million gift from an anonymous donor given “in recognition of the amazing job he has done in the past four and a half years as the chairman of the Lawrence board.”

The $1 million gift will go toward Lawrence’s focused student scholarship campaign —  “Full Speed to Full Need” — launched last September with a gift of $25 million, the largest in school history. Lawrence alumni and friends since have contributed an additional $21.5 million in matching gifts for a total of $46.5 million toward a goal of $50 million. The funds will be used exclusively for endowed scholarships to help meet students’ demonstrated financial need.

“Terry Franke has led the Lawrence Board of Trustees during a time of immense growth and significant change for the university. I cannot think of a better way to acknowledge his service to his alma mater than this wonderful gift to establish the Terry and Mary Franke Scholarship fund,” said Mark Burstein, university president.

Susan-Stillman-Kane_newsblog
Susan Stillman Kane ’72

Franke, a 1968 Lawrence graduate, has served on Lawrence’s Board of Trustees for 16 years, including as chair since January, 2011. He spent most of his career at Hewitt Associates, where he was a senior partner. More recently he has served as a senior consultant for Productive Strategies, Inc., a management and marketing consulting firm based in Northfield, Ill.

The end of Franke’s term as chair brings new leadership to the board. Susan Stillman Kane, an Oshkosh native who graduated from Lawrence in 1972, succeeds Franke as chair of the board. She has been a member of the board since 2002. During her tenure she has served in numerous leadership positions. Kane’s mother, Elizabeth Stillman, was a 1933 graduate of Milwaukee-Downer College, which merged with Lawrence College in 1964.

“It is a testament to the strength of the Lawrence community that after Terry’s incredibly successful tenure that the Board is fortunate to have someone as talented as Susie Stillman Kane to assume its leadership as the incoming chair,” said Burstein.

Kane, who resides in Swampscott, Mass., is a long-time dedicated community volunteer.  She spent 23 years on the board, including several years as board president, of the Citizens’ Scholarship Foundation of Marblehead, Inc., which provides scholarships for high school seniors and college students from the community. She also has served as an elected town meeting member in Swampscott.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2015 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

Matching Gifts to Lawrence University’s Scholarship Endowment Top $11M

The response to Lawrence University’s announcement of a $25 million matching gift from an anonymous donor for student scholarships has been overwhelming.

Mark Bernstein_match gift_newwblog
President Mark Burstein

Since announcing the largest gift in Lawrence history on Sept. 17, the university has received $11.4 million in matching gifts and pledges, more than 45 percent of the full match amount.

When fully matched, an additional $50 million will be added to Lawrence’s endowment earmarked exclusively for student scholarship support.

More than 260 donors have contributed to the scholarship matching effort to date with gifts ranging from $20 to $5 million. Underscoring the broad appeal of the match, more than half (54 percent) of the matching gifts have been for less than $250, with more than 100 of those for less than $100.

The scholarship endowment will be used for students with demonstrated financial need.

“It is inspiring to see this outpouring of generosity from the Lawrence community and know each dollar will support a student on this campus,” said President Mark Burstein. “The need-based scholarships generated by this endowment will greatly enhance our efforts to make a Lawrence education affordable to families across the socioeconomic spectrum. The funds raised so far will support over 75 Lawrence students forever.”

Hugh-Denison_'14_newsblog
Hugh Denison ’68

Hugh Denison, a 1968 Lawrence graduate, who has committed $1 million to the matching gift effort, said the decision he and his wife, Mary, made to do so, “is one of the best we’ve ever made. We will enjoy seeing the results of that decision for years to come.”

“While it’s perfectly appropriate to categorize this as a gift to Lawrence, we actually view it more as an investment in the next generation of students who will have the same opportunity for the world-class education that I received,” said Denison, former senior vice president, research director and portfolio manager at Heartland Advisors, Inc., a Milwaukee-based investment firm.

“My wife and I were blessed with families who could pay for our educations when we attended college, but we know that is becoming a rarity these days,” Denison added.  “We’re gratified to be able to make a difference and provide scholarship assistance to many students who might otherwise be unable to afford the great education Lawrence provides.”

Cara-Helmke_newsblog
Cara Helmke ’00

Cara Helmke, a 2000 Lawrence graduate, called Lawrence’s new scholarship endowment “the gift that keeps on giving.”

“The day I heard the news, I knew I wanted to contribute,” said Helmke, a Wisconsin native now living in Clovis, Calif., and working as a hospital billing analyst. “It feels good to give to Lawrence. It feels even better to have those dollars matched again and support students in perpetuity. With less stress over financial obligations, students can focus on academic and extracurricular activities or other life-changing experiences.

“Whether large or small, each contribution gets the university closer to the $50 million goal,” Helmke added. “Collectively, we can provide a world of opportunity for future generations of Lawrence students.”

Claudena-Skran_newsblog
Professor Claudena Skran

Support for the scholarship effort extends beyond the ranks of Lawrence alumni to include current faculty. Claudena Skran, Edwin and Ruth West Professor of Economics and Social Science and professor of government, along with her husband, David Duncombe, have made a $100,000 commitment to create a scholarship targeting international students.

“Lawrence has a great tradition of educating students from abroad and we would like this tradition to continue,” said Skran, a specialist in international relations and refugee issues who joined the Lawrence faculty in 1990. “Students who attend Lawrence form a community that extends in time beyond their four years here and in scope beyond the Appleton campus. Many international students have shared how much attending Lawrence has changed their perspective of the world and of themselves.

According to Skran, supporting the scholarship effort pays dividends to more than just the student recipients.

“Beyond the students who receive the scholarships” said Skran, “others at Lawrence – students, faculty and staff members – benefit as well if the scholarships help make our campus more globally diverse.”

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2015 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

           

Lawrence University Endowment Earns 16.2 Percent During 2013-14 Fiscal Year

A robust 16.2 percent return on investment helped boost Lawrence University’s endowment to an institutional-record high of $249.5 million for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014 according to recently released audited financial statements.

Endowment_newsblog
Lawrence’s endowment helps support one of the country’s lowest student-faculty ratios.

Last year’s return was more than 4 percentage points higher than both the return for the 2012-13 fiscal year (11.9 percent) and Lawrence’s five-year average return of 12 percent. The endowment stood at $212.4 million on June 30, 2013.

“Our return on investment reflects a strong market performance and a great portfolio balance designed by our investment committee and advisors,” said Christopher Lee, vice president for finance and administration.

Lawrence’s endowment helps to fund operations critical to the university’s educational mission, including academic programs and student financial aid programs that enable Lawrence to remain affordable and accessible to all qualified admitted students. Distributions from Lawrence’s endowment supported 17 percent of the university’s operating costs in the last fiscal year.

“The cost of a high-quality education is often at odds with the affordability of that education,” said Lee. “Lawrence’s engaged learning experience requires a diverse and highly qualified faculty. Our 9:1 student-to-faculty ratio ensures that students get the attention and expertise they need to prepare for well-rounded lives and careers. This is not an inexpensive undertaking.”

The cost basis of a Lawrence education for the 2013-14 academic year was approximately $41,000 per student.

“Through the generosity of our donors, the returns on our investments, grants and other revenues, our students paid an average of $27,000, 35 percent less than actual costs,” said Lee. “We are committed to sustaining the high quality of the Lawrence experience while continuing to seek funding that reduces the burden of that cost on our students and their families.”

Last month, Lawrence announced a school-record $25 million anonymous gift to establish an endowed scholarship. As a matching gift, it will eventually add $50 million to Lawrence’s endowment and provide for the financial need of at least 50 students each year in perpetuity.

For the current academic year, Lawrence provided $33.4 million in institutional financial aid. Ninety-six percent of Lawrence students are receiving need and/or merit based financial aid for the 2014-15 academic year. Twenty-two percent of Lawrence students are currently receiving federal Pell Grants, which are awarded to undergraduates from low-income families with the highest need.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2015 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.

 

Lawrence Receives Record $25 Million Gift for Scholarship Endowment

A lives changer.

That’s how Lawrence University President Mark Burstein sees a $25 million anonymous gift the college has received to support student scholarships.

major-gift-news-blog2The $25 million gift is the largest in Lawrence history and will be used to establish an endowed scholarship to help meet the financial need for future Lawrence students. It is a dollar-for-dollar matching gift that will result in a new $50 million in additional endowment to support scholarships.

“A gift this size will truly change lives. We are humbled by the donor’s generosity,” said Burstein. “This gift and subsequent matching support will further enhance Lawrence’s role as a catalyst for social mobility.

“The magnitude of a $25 million gift is really immeasurable, but we know it will impact generations of students from across the country and around the world,” Burstein added. “The students who benefit from this gift will go on to make a difference in their home communities. That will be the ultimate dividend of this gift.”

“Few moments happen in the more than 160-year history of an institution like Lawrence that are truly transformative. This is one of them,” said Terry Franke, a 1968 Lawrence graduate and current chair of the college’s Board of Trustees. “A boost of $50 million in our endowment guarantees that Lawrence remains affordable for generations to come. I’m sure it will excite our alumni as much as it does me.”

Based on the average financial aid package for the 2014-15 academic year, the endowment draw from this gift will allow Lawrence to offer financial aid awards that meet the full institutionally demonstrated financial need of at least 50 students each year in perpetuity.

“The magnitude of a $25 million gift is really immeasurable, but we know it will
impact generations of students from across the country and around the world.”
— President Mark Burstein

Since becoming Lawrence’s 16th president in July 2013, Burstein has made affordability a central institutional priority.

Major-Gift_newsblog#2“We fully realize college costs can be a financial burden, which is why we are so focused on scholarship support,” said Burstein. “With this gift, along with an institutional commitment to contain expenses and manage tuition growth, we aim to help students from all backgrounds attend Lawrence and reap the benefits of a challenging and rigorous education.”

The importance of a college degree in improving a person’s social mobility was underscored in a 2008 Brookings Institution report, “Getting Ahead or Losing Ground: Economic Mobility in America.”

According to the report’s authors, when children born into the bottom fifth of the United States of the income distribution earn a college degree, their chances of making it to the top fifth of income earners nearly quadruple, and their chances of escaping the bottom income quintile increase by more than 50 percent. While half of all people from high-income families have a bachelor’s degree by age 25, only 1 in 10 people from low-income families do.

The record-setting gift comes on the heels of other positive financial news for Lawrence. The college is coming off its best year ever for gifts to its annual giving program — the Lawrence Fund — with an institutional record $3.7 million raised during the 2013-14 fiscal year.

The Lawrence Fund provides nearly 10 percent of the college’s annual operating budget. It helps bridge the gap between what students pay in tuition and actual operating costs and in conjunction with endowment earnings, helps reduce each student’s tuition by more than $10,000 per year.

In July, Lawrence announced a $2.5 million gift to expand its current teacher education program to include elementary teacher education certification beginning in the fall of 2015.Major-Gifts_newsblog_4

Earlier this year, Lawrence received a $2.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Title III SIP program for a comprehensive program designed to increase the graduation rate of at-risk students.

“Collectively these gifts and grants have fueled considerable institutional momentum that will help our students have a positive, productive experience while they’re here and prepare them to succeed in a rapidly changing world,” Burstein said.

Lawrence’s previous largest gift was $16 million in 2006 for the Warch Campus Center.

For the 2014-15 academic year, Lawrence provided $33.4 million in institutional financial aid.

Ninety-six percent of Lawrence students are receiving need and/or merit based financial aid for the 2014-15 academic year.

The average need-based student financial aid package for the current school year is $35,600.

For the current school year, 21 percent of Lawrence students are receiving federal Pell Grants, which are given to undergraduates from low-income families with the highest need.

As for June 30, 2014, Lawrence’s endowment was nearly $250 million and experienced a 16.2 percent investment return over the fiscal year.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2015 and the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.