How often have you read the following? “Your gift will make a difference in the lives of these … .” I’ve read it, and even written it in my letters. It is pretty effective, too. I’ve supported children, teens, seniors, dogs, cats, even bought a chicken to help a family. The problem for me has been that the stories always feel distant. I don’t regularly see the conditions that are being described.

This is another appeal, and it is for the St. Thomas Faculty and Staff Annual Campaign. Rather than tell you again the difference that your support will make, I thought that this year, I should share some examples of the difference that past gifts have made. Following are excerpts from thank-you notes written by recipients of scholarships established by St. Thomas staff members and/or departments:

“I work full-time to pay my tuition, books and living expenses at St. Thomas. The Non-exempt Staff Council Scholarship represents more than 150 hours of real labor to me!” – Michael

“Because of the Jack Brownstein Scholarship, I am even more motivated, seeing that my hard work has paid off and that I truly have confidence I can make a difference.” – Jenna

“The Arlene Robinson Scholarship will allow me not to have to work 30-40 hours a week this year. Ultimately, this will allow me to focus more on my courses than on maintain my financial standing at St. Thomas.” – Justin

That is the impact of our giving. I can’t say it any better. The 2018 Faculty and Staff Annual Campaign is underway, and you can make your gift online or by submitting the giving form. You can designate your gift to just about anything on our campuses. Suggested funds related to your area, along with a few other funds, are printed on the back of the form you will receive through campus mail. Gifts can be made by check, credit card or through payroll deduction. Consider setting up an open-ended payroll deduction. This means that you specify an amount to be deducted every two weeks from your paycheck, continuing until you stop it.

The impact of the Faculty and Staff Annual Campaign has grown as the number of participants has increased. Last year, 49 percent of St. Thomas faculty and staff members made a gift. Imagine if that number grew to 55 percent and the difference we could make in the lives of our current students!

Gifts given through the Faculty and Staff Annual Campaign support the community we work in and the lives of the students we see every day. I’m not talking chopped liver; this is significant. Thanks for your consideration!

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