Thursday, May 19, 2005

Now is the time high school seniors all over the nation will graduate. Diplomas in hand, they will spend the summer babysitting, working at camps, waiting tables, mowing lawns and relaxing before beginning a new chapter in their lives: college.

While many graduates are enjoying the last summer of “freedom” before they enter the “real world” of higher education and adult responsibilities, Fairmont State and the Fairmont State Foundation are working to help generate financial support for the incoming freshman class. Private giving is crucial to the success of North Central West Virginia’s new high school graduates.

Alumni and friends are asked to help meet the annual scholarship fundraising goal by sending a gift in support of the Fairmont State Fund for Excellence. To make a gift call (866) FSC-ALUM or visit here

Gifts made to the Fairmont State Foundation in the next 40 days will determine the institution’s ability to offer its well-known level of academic support to incoming students.

Alumni and friends can read about a Fairmont State financial aid success story and make a gift by mail through a recent informational letter sent by Delbert “Butch” Phillips, Chair of the Fairmont State Foundation Scholarship Committee.

The number of students graduating from U.S. high schools will continue to rise steadily over the coming years, reaching a peak of 3.2 million in 2008-09, according to the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education and the College Board. Demand for a college education is rising, and Fairmont State is ready to meet that demand.

“Fairmont State has seen an enrollment increase of 16.9 percent in the last five years,” Phillips said. “Providing scholarship aid to keep pace with that kind of growth rate is a challenge, particularly given the recent cuts in state and federal aid to higher education.”

Eighty percent of Fairmont State students receive some form of financial aid.
“We are only able to provide this level scholarship support through private gifts to the Fairmont State Fund for Excellence,” Phillips said.

The Fairmont State Fund for Excellence provides general scholarship dollars for merit, athletic and program specific scholarships. Every dollar earmarked for the fund is used to provide student aid.

“High school graduation is a wonderful personal accomplishment,” said Dr. Daniel Bradley, Fairmont State University President.

“For each graduate, the successes of the past 12 years were made possible because of the support of their families and the community. We want to assure all of our local graduates and their parents that we will be working all summer to support their students’ transition to the next level of their education.”

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 (866) FSC-ALUM or (304) 367-4014. To make a gift online, visit the Foundation web site at http://fairmontstatefoundation.org/.