Monday, December 20, 2004

A new scholarship at Fairmont State gives students a chance to earn valuable real-world experience in marketing and development while attending school.

Through the generosity of the United Way of Marion County, the United Way of Marion County Scholarship, endowed through the Fairmont State Foundation Inc., will be awarded each year to a junior or senior student in an upper level English course (English 3399).

The recipient must possess writing skills, which will be evaluated with an essay component in the application. The recipient will be chosen by the United Way of Marion County Scholarship Committee. Each scholarship will total $800 each for the fall and spring semesters and $400 each for the two summer sessions.

“The United Way of Marion County is a small, non-profit organization with limited resources, money and staff. During our 2003 Community Needs Assessment it became apparent to us that we were not doing a good job of letting Marion County know who we are and what we do,” said Robin Smith, Executive Director of United Way of Marion County.

“We need to do a better job of connecting our annual campaign with the agencies and services that are provided. By developing this scholarship and working with the student recipient to develop our communications, we increase our message to Marion County and at the same time, provide valuable hands-on, real-time experience in marketing and development to the student.”

Melissa Garcia of Barrackville has been selected as the first recipient of the scholarship. Beginning in January, her duties for the scholarship will include helping the United Way to develop a marketing and media plan, helping with the design of publications and helping with writing articles on agencies that the United Way supports. Garcia, a junior English and Spanish education major at FSU, is a member of the Honors Program and Sigma Tau Delta (English Honorary). She is a graduate of North Marion High School.

“We are excited about Melissa joining the United Way team in January,” Smith said. “She is bringing a level of energy and creativity that I’m sure will benefit the United Way, our member agencies and the community.”

The United Way of Marion County supports 23 member agencies that provide a variety of services to the community. United Way programs and services touch one out of every three residents of Marion County. The organization’s mission is to increase available resources to enhance the effective delivery of charitable services in the community. In addition to its annual campaign, the United Way is developing additional resources to benefit not only its member agencies, but all non-profits in Marion County.

“The United Way scholarship is a wonderful example of the power of non-profit partnering,” said Patty Pitrolo, Director of Major Gifts for the Fairmont State Foundation. “This type of creative problem solving and resource building is the hallmark of non-profit organizations. Fairmont State and the Fairmont State Foundation are proud to be affiliated with the United Way, an organization that has always been an innovator. We hope that this program will be a model for other organizations as they look toward ways to improve their programming and resources.”

The Fairmont State Foundation Inc. helps to secure resources for scholarships, faculty development, cultural programming and other needs. The Fairmont State Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization formed to assist Fairmont State by accepting and encouraging gifts and by using them to advance the missions of Fairmont State University and Fairmont State Community & Technical College. The Foundation is operated exclusively for charitable and educational purposes.

For more information on gift planning, call (304) 367-4014. To make a gift online, click here