FHSU Foundation will recognize private giving with inaugural 'Philanthropy Awareness Day'



02/16/12 ks/jg

HAYS, Kan. -- A 15-minute event on the Quad next week atFort Hays State University will call attention to an under-appreciated butextremely important aspect of higher education.

Set for 10:15 to 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 23, theinaugural Philanthropy Awareness Day will educate students, faculty, staff and the Hays community about the necessity and importance of private donations toFHSU.

Presenters during the brief ceremony will include FHSUFoundation President and CEO Tim Chapman, a member of the Foundation YoungAdvisory Council and a prominent donor. They will speak about the importance ofphilanthropy and how everyone on campus benefits from generosity of others.

"We wanted to grab as many students as possible, sowe're setting up shop in the Quad between classes," said James Gerstner, theFoundation's annual giving director. "We want to pull students into abrief presentation and start the process of passing the message of howimportant private donors are to the well-being of FHSU."

Gerstner said the theme of Philanthropy Awareness Day wouldrevolve around the 1:1:1 ratio of funding in the FHSU operating budget. "Roughlya third of the budget is funded by tuition, roughly a third is funded by thestate and the final third is private support," he explained. "We planto tie this event into the overall theme for many of this year's annualcampaigns."

The theme is "What if?"

"What if FHSU weren't here?" Gerstner asked. "Howwould that affect our students and the 800-some employees who work on campus? Howwould that affect the city of Hays, western Kansas and Virtual College studentsfrom all over the world? We want to spread the message that all students, eventhose who don't specifically receive a scholarship or financial assistance,have benefited from the generosity of FHSU alumni and friends of theuniversity."

In addition to the "short and sweet" ceremony onthe Quad, representatives from the Foundation will set up a table in theMemorial Union and continue to spread the message throughout the day.

Chapman said Philanthropy Awareness Day would send themessage that 30 percent of a student's education and extracurricularexperiences are dependent on others making private gifts in support of theuniversity. "This is an effort to bring awareness to our students andcampus that if we didn't have private support, their education would not bepossible," he said. "We are trying this with the hope of implantingthe message that everyone needs to be a part of the team in support of FHSU."


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