Letter: Thanks for support of Staples Tuition Grants
Published 7:05 am, Sunday, August 2, 2015
On behalf of the Staples Tuition Grants board, we would like to express our sincere gratitude to all of our donors.
As STG’s 2015 fiscal year draws to a close on July 31, we are reflecting on their generosity, which made it possible for STG to distribute tuition grants totaling $322,000 to 113 graduates of Staples High School at STG’s Awards Night on June 9. These students consequently are able to pursue higher education at colleges and trade schools across the nation when the new academic year commences in August.
At STG we continue to see how the constantly rising cost of higher education has financially stretched so many Westport families, despite their best efforts over many years to prepare for this day. Most Westporters are proud of the education children receive in this community, but far fewer are aware of the financial difficulties many of our academically well-prepared students face in trying to take advantage of the opportunities for higher education they have earned. While all grants are based on need, this year, once again, the STG volunteer Board was impressed by the academic, athletic and extracurricular commitments these students display, and by their focus on their families and their career ambitions.
Every year since 1943, STG has been engaging residents in a venerable act of community, raising money for graduates of our local public high school who require financial assistance so that they, too, may obtain the education they desire. Donations both big and small are testament to the caring concern of our citizens. We are gratified that the number of donors to STG’s general fund continues to increase, and they provided about one-third of the total STG was able to distribute to students this year. We are honored that eight new named gift awards were established: Josephine Brummel Scholarship; John M. Dodig Award; Fonteyn Family Award; the Elizabeth and Joe Massoud Family Foundation Award; Chou Chou Merrill Award; Gene Pelletier Scholarship Award; Patricia Weber Baxter Pelton Award; Gordon Swisha Award.
We also want to thank our keynote speaker, Ann Sheffer; our student speaker, Megumi Asada, Staples ’13; host Dan Woog; and Staples Principal John Dodig for their roles in making STG’s Awards Night such a success this year
Until recently, STG has managed to steadily increase its fundraising. However, the need for tuition assistance consistently exceeds what the organization can provide. In the year ahead, STG will be seeking to improve the ways it informs the community about this challenge. We hope our faithful donors will continue to respond positively to our requests, and that many others also will make the meaningful decision to contribute to this worthy effort. Westport’s students rely upon you! For more information on Staples Tuition Grants, or to donate, please visit www.staplestuitiongrants.org.
Rob Morrison and Maggie Mudd