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Challenge of A Lifetime« Back to Page 1
She then told her story, but at the same time let them know that it wasn’t just the scholarship that helped her get to where she is today: What it takes is heart. It takes heart in your studies, heart in your activities, and it takes the heart of others who can help you on your way.
She concluded by paying homage to Andrew Carnegie, whose motto was: “My heart is in the work.” She noted how both her classmates and those in attendance would have made one of the university’s principal namesakes proud: All the students have their heart in the work. But I’d have to say there’s a great many people who have their heart in the university, and what it takes to help people reach their dreams.
Helping others is something that Weigand identifies with, not just through being an RA. If you can get through every hurdle at Carnegie Mellon without help, then “you should be running the world,” she jokes. The encouraging and supportive community she feels a part of is just one more reason she is grateful to have found a way to enroll at Carnegie Mellon. “We all understand that we will be in the library at all hours of the day, but it’s because we want to be better for our sake—not because we want someone else to be worse.” She loves that the environment is collaborative, not competitive—a point of pride she thinks Carnegie Mellon has over some of the Ivy League schools.
The university’s trustees have become directly involved in helping more students like Weigand. Last fall, the Inspire Innovation Capital Campaign launched the Trustee Challenge. It’s a two-year giving initiative geared toward all members of the worldwide university community. The initiative encourages donors to reach new levels of giving through the assistance of trustee gifts with a primary goal of increasing scholarships and financial support for students.
The way it works is that prospective donors with the passion—but perhaps not the means—can still make a significant contribution to the university because of whole or partially matched gifts from the university’s trustees. There are four separate but interconnected pieces to the Trustee Challenge, all of which help students in need of financial assistance.
Through these four challenges, the university aims to create about 250 new scholarships during the next two years in order to ease the burden of the cost of a Carnegie Mellon education. One of the reasons Weigand says she has come forward with her story is that she believes students shouldn’t be forced to choose between a school that they feel is best suited for them and manageable debt. She feels like she belongs at Carnegie Mellon. She thrives in being a part of a community that she’ll unabashedly tell you is “driven and quirky,” in the best possible way. Her friends “get” her stories, understand her drive, and don’t question her whether she is spending weekend nights at the library or getting involved in some activity that has nothing to do with her major.
After three years at Carnegie Mellon, she says with the utmost confidence: “It was the only right choice.” What’s more, she can say it without the dread of unwieldy future debt. The Trustee Challenge aims to stuff the good fortune Weigand has experienced into more Carnegie Mellon acceptance letters.
Shannon Deep (CMU’10,HNZ’11) of New York City has been a regular contributor to this magazine since her senior year at Carnegie Mellon.
$1 Billion and Counting
Carnegie Mellon University’s Inspire Innovation campaign has crossed the $1 billion milestone.
Thanks to the generous support of our alumni, faculty, staff, students, and friends, the campaign has raised $1.01 billion to date, with $530.6 million going toward our endowment.
Already, we are experiencing the amazing impact this campaign has generated across the entire university, including the establishment of 190 endowed scholarships, 73 endowed fellowships, and 24 endowed professorships.
With the campaign ending on June 30, 2013, there is still time for you to be a part of this historic effort.
The Inspire Innovation Trustee Challenge
There are four separate but interconnected pieces to the Trustee Challenge, all of which help students in need of financial assistance.
Loyal Scot Trustee Challenge
Loyal Scots complete four steps each fiscal year:
- Staying Informed
- Getting Involved
- Giving Back
- Showing Pride
The alumni chapter that reaches thehighest percentage of Loyal Scots among its members by June 30, 2012, will have the naming rights to a $100,000 trustees' gift designated to an endowed student support fund. The challenge repeats the following year.
Andrew Carnegie Society Legacy Scholarship Trustee Challenge
This aspect of the Trustee Challenge encourages donors to create ACS Legacy Scholarships of $10,000 for only a $7,000 contribution. The other $3,000 will come from trustees' contributions. (Certain restrictions apply in terms of donor eligibility.)
Endowed Scholarship Trustee Challenge
Normally, a $50,000 gift to the university is required to establish a named endowed scholarship. With a partially matched gift, the Trustee Challenge almost halves that commitment. Now, qualified donors need only contribute $30,000 and the trustees will provide the remaining $20,000.
Dietrich College Trustee Challenge
Trustee David Shapira and the Giant Eagle Foundation are offering approximately $800,000 in matching funds to support the Dietrich College of H&SS, which includes matching on a dollar-for-dollar basis any gift of $500 to $100,000 made to the Dietrich College Dean's Innovation Fund. (Opportunities exist to have this challenge tie in to the ACS Challenge.)
For Trustee Challenge details, visit www.cmu.edu/campaign/challenge