Anonymous Donor of Scholarship Money Surprises Business Dean

Everyone has dreams for Christmas. Academic deans dream of ways to support talented students and to recruit the best and brightest to their programs. Fort Hays State University College of Business and Leadership Dean, Mark Bannister had one of his dreams fulfilled with a pleasant surprise just after Christmas. An anonymous donor contributed $20,000 to the college’s scholarship funds at the end of 2010. This contribution is to be used to recruit talented students to the college’s on-campus programs.

Bannister said, the funding can be used to support new students in the college’s three large departments which comprise programs including: Accounting, Banking, Finance, International Business and Economics, Management, Marketing, Business Education, Training and Development, Corporate Communications, Computer Networking, Media Studies, Information Assurance, and Web Development. Therefore, the college is announcing a new scholarship called the “College of Business and Leadership Academic Achievement Scholarship.”

Bannister said “Students will be selected from those who have applied for programs in the college for the Fall 2011. The new donation will be added to from other scholarship donations in order to offer ten students each a scholarship of $2,500. This scholarship will add to $900 Academic Opportunity Awards and Miller Black and Gold or Hays City Silver Scholarships which are automatic awards earned by high ACT students. Students may have other academic scholarships in their portfolio as well.”

The cost of Fort Hays State University’s current tuition is $3,942 a year. Bannister said “With their bundle of scholarships, the recipients of the new Academic Achievement Scholarships will likely end up with at least their first year of college tuition paid. Continuing scholarships such as the Black and Gold, Silver, and upper division scholarships will mean that talented and high achieving students in the college’s areas of study will have the opportunity to earn a bachelors degree with most tuition paid for four years. This is a great benefit not available at most universities. Hard work and challenging courses will have paid off for these students.”

When asked if he had any idea who the anonymous donor is, Bannister said, “I believe it is an alum who benefited from a scholarship and who believes in Fort Hays State University. I am hoping that if we can demonstrate that we can benefit students and use the gift wisely, future gifts may follow.”