Purdue Alumnus Purdue Alumnus NovDec 2015 : Page 38

THE GREAT BIG 38 PURDUE ALUMNUS GIVING GU

Great Big Giving Guide

Erin Peterson

Purdue recently launched its most ambitious campaign ever. Here’s everything you need to know about how to give, what your gift will support, and how the campaign will make Purdue great for its next 150 years.

Purdue has long inspired big thinking — from Amelia Earhart’s teachings to Neil Armstrong’s moon walk. And as it launches the $2.019 billion “Ever True” campaign — its most ambitious ever — its visionary approach will carry the school from its first 150 years into a brand-new era.

The enthusiasm starts from the very top: President Mitch Daniels believes the campaign will open up massive opportunities for the university. “We’re excited about what the generosity of the Boilermaker family will allow us to achieve, especially in terms of investments in student success and affordability, and in critical teaching and research areas,” he says.

And for Chris Burke (BSCE ’77, MSCE, ’79, PhD ’83), a member of the campaign’s Champions Committee, the campaign will help make Purdue better than ever. “This campaign will ensure that tomorrow’s students get an education that is just as valuable as — and maybe even more valuable than — the one we got.”

BEYOND THE CHECK

Purdue is grateful for all gifts — and some come in very creative packages. For instance, some graduates have donated commodities (such as livestock or crops) that, when sold, translate into a cash gift. We talked with Amy Noah, the Purdue Research Foundation’s vice president for development, about the diverse ways that Purdue’s donors have found to support the university.

COMMODITIES: Cash, credit, or … corn? Some graduates from the College of Agriculture have donated crops that Purdue then processes, liquidates, and turns into a cash gift. Other donors have considered gifts of minerals that the university can sell.

PERSONAL PROPERTY: Art, jewelry, and real estate have all been donated. The transfer of farm ground and timber properties has supported agricultural research, teaching, and extension missions. “We’re creative about the different mechanisms through which people can make gifts,” says Noah

TRUSTS: Trusts can get complicated fast, but can be structured to provide regular or lump-sum payments to the university and the donor. “We literally consider every option for this type of gift,” says Noah.

RETIREMENT ACCOUNTS AND LIFE INSURANCE: Donors can designate Purdue as a full or partial beneficiary of an IRA, 401(k), 402(b), or life insurance policy.

WILLS: Some Boilermakers have been able to fund major gifts — like endowing a professorship — when they leave a portion of their estate to Purdue in their will.

RECURRING GIFTS: When is giving like a Netflix subscription? Small monthly (or quarterly) gifts can add up over time — but you’ll hardly feel it. And unlike Netflix, giving to Purdue inspires a sense of altruism and pride, not binge-watching regret.

OTHER WAYS TO GIVE: Head to purdue.edu/evertrue/waystogive to find out about other ways to make a gift.

WHY PURDUE?

Rusty Rueff (la’84, ms edu’86), who sits on Purdue’s Champions Committee, is board chairman emeritus of the Grammy Foundation and an appointee of President Obama to the Advisory Committee on the Arts for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. He shared why he thinks there’s no better university than Purdue to lead the country — and the world — into the future.

What does it mean for students to be “prepared for the future”?

We can’t know the future with certainty. If you’d asked me seven years ago if there would be a need for data scientists, I’m not sure I would have said yes. Now we’re in a rush to create these data scientists: we have quick-training programs and boot camps. But will they then be prepared for the next new thing? A great holistic education will allow graduates to have a much broader vantage point and context to be prepared to take advantage of whatever comes next.

How is Purdue well positioned to deliver that broader education?

Purdue has very strong programs in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). What Purdue also has that creates a competitive advantage is rich — and historically successful — disciplines in the humanities, business, the social sciences, and the arts. STEM-educated graduates from Purdue get exposure to all these areas, and that matters. You can be a civil engineer and build a bridge, for example. But if you learn about more than just civil engineering, maybe you also appreciate the distinction of creating that bridge from environmentally sustainable materials. Maybe you’re also inspired to design a bridge that is recognized and loved as much for its beauty as for its function. Multidimensional and cross discipline learning experiences make our graduates more valuable in the marketplace.

Value is an interesting word, because it’s not just about dollars and cents, right?

You can find value in multiple ways. For example, in the short term, President Daniels’s tuition freeze has created financial value. We’re providing a broad education with more offerings than other universities are able to, and that’s creating learning value. You also receive experiential value in time spent on campus — when you’re living and eating and sitting in class next to someone who is markedly different from you. When we talk about investing in innovation and improvement of campus residence life, it’s because these experiences can all benefit and create a lifetime of value.

PATTI AND RUSTY RUEFF are the named benefactors of the Patti and Rusty Rueff School of Visual and Performing Arts.

THE BIG STRETCH

For current students and longtime supporters, a campaign represents the perfect opportunity to amp up giving. We talked with two people who have gone above and beyond expectations in their giving — and why.

Lukia Chen (M’16) When senior Lukia Chen learned that she and her four Krannert-school teammates had won the $5,000 prize at the Kraft Data Dive Competition this past spring, she easily could have found a dozen ways to spend her $1,000 take.

Instead, she gave every single dollar to Purdue. “I didn’t even have to think about it that much,” she admits. “Since day one, I’ve gotten so much help from everyone here. Anything I can do to help Purdue a little bit, I’m willing to do.”

Certainly, there are few students who have wrung more out of their Purdue experience than Chen. A native of Chongqing, China, Chen is triple majoring in accounting, finance, and supply chain information and analytics. In addition to her impressive academic achievements, she also co-founded Purdue’s student chapter of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE). The group hosts regular meetings and has even brought a retired FBI official to campus as a guest speaker.

Chen says that it was during a 2013 summer road trip to the West Coast that she realized how much Purdue had shaped her. “Whether I was in a hotel or a restaurant, people often asked me where I went to school. When I told them about Purdue, they always knew about it,” she says. “I realized it was part of my identity, and I was really proud to be a Boilermaker.”

Chen’s gift will support the student organization she helped found. For her, the gift is about more than funding pizza and soda at meetings. “Last year, someone asked me what legacy I thought I would leave behind when I graduated,” she recalls. “I’d never thought about it before, but [this gift] is part of it. It’s something I could leave with the school that I really, really love.”

Joy Matson

Joy Matson didn’t graduate from Purdue. In fact, she’s never enrolled in a single Purdue class. But her love of Purdue runs so deep that it might as well be etched into her DNA.

Matson, who’s been in numerous roles in the real estate industry during her three decades in West Lafayette, spends much of her time working with people who are coming to the university for faculty and staff positions. “I get pretty attached to a lot of folks that I work with,” she says. “And a number of them have helped me get more and more involved with Purdue.”

She’s long volunteered her time for the university: she’s on the advisory board for Purdue’s Center for Cancer Research, and she’s a member of the dean’s advisory council for Purdue University Libraries.

Recently, she stepped up with a unique and generous gift. In 2014, Matson purchased a beautiful-but-aging home in one of the most sought-after neighborhoods in West Lafayette. She spent months rehabbing it until it shone. But instead of selling the house to nab some quick profits, she created an unforgettable event.

She hosted a community open house, and brought in five eminent researchers from the Center for Cancer Research to share their own work. She made it clear that when she sold the house, every cent of profit would go directly to the center. “I wanted to do more than just sell the house and give the money away,” she says. “I wanted to help educate the community about the Center for Cancer Research—to promote the amazing work they’re doing.”

Ultimately, the event was a massive success: it generated a five-figure gift for the center and highlighted some of its best work. “I think the event started to get the word out about what we have right in our own backyard,” Matson explains.

For Matson, the gift is her way of being part of something much larger than herself. “Purdue is a great university with a lot of incredible discoveries being made — and yet to be made,” she says. “I’m happy to be a small part of this.”

A SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENT SPEAKS

As part of the campaign, more than $400 million will be allocated for student support, which will allow the university to expand scholarships dramatically in the coming years.

For Chicago native Brigit Ryan (HHS’15), college preparation started early. “I completed all my requirements for graduation my junior year of high school,” she explains. She also used a dual-credit option her senior year to earn credits at a community college. She had 22 credits that transferred to Purdue, and added another 12 by testing out of all of her Spanish classes.

With the help of multiple merit- and need-based scholarships, Ryan covered most of her college costs. “Those scholarships meant that I only had to work part-time at my bartending job so I could focus on school,” she says.

In addition to her studies to earn a degree in public health, she found time to do an unpaid internship at a medical center in Indianapolis. She also prioritized a little bit of fun: she earned enough money through her part-time job to pay for a whirlwind trip to Europe this past summer. When she graduates later this fall, she plans to make the most of the contacts she’s developed at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, where she hopes to land a job. The best part? She’ll graduate without a single cent of debt.

Ryan is thrilled that she’s been able to make the most of her Purdue experience. “I’m so grateful to be a scholarship recipient,” she says. “And [scholarships like these] are why it’s so important to give to Purdue.”

MAKING BIG EVEN BETTER

To develop the world’s best engineers, great engineering education must begin early. Supporting and studying these early engineering education efforts is the goal of Purdue’s INSPIRE Research Institute for Pre-College Engineering.

While other groups across the nation do similar work, Purdue’s INSPIRE Institute’s size and scope makes it unique. “When you have researchers who focus on many different pieces of the puzzle — student learning, teacher professional development, learning environments, broadening participation — you’re able to understand the whole system better,” explains INSPIRE director Monica Cardella.

This is part of the reason that donations to INSPIRE are so powerful. Many gifts serve as the “seed funding” to launch pilot programs that can have a major impact. Before such programming launches, researchers discuss smart ways to build on a single program to make it effective.

Indeed, when the institute was founded in 2006, it launched week-long workshops to help teachers bring engineering concepts to their classrooms. The workshops have provided a platform for INSPIRE to impact not just individual teachers, but schools and even whole school districts. “From those early teacher workshops, we were able to develop partnerships with school districts which then allowed us to be competitive in getting the bigger National Science Foundation grants,” explains Cardella. “It was valuable to be able to show that we had already established partnerships.”

It’s not just programming that results from private funding. Donor gifts allow INSPIRE to include undergraduates in all aspects of the research process and also help them travel to conferences to present their research.

These days, the institute is thinking beyond the classroom. It’s currently developing partnerships with local science centers, and it has the expertise to go even bigger: “We’d love to partner with WBAA to develop some podcasts to support parents who want to help their kids with science, technology, engineering, and math learning,” Cardella says. “We’d also like to support practicing engineers as they go into the classrooms and science centers to volunteer.”

While INSPIRE’s work is focused on the research of engineering learning, Cardella says donor gifts can help bring the best tools and research to a wider audience. “We want our work to have a national impact,” she says.

WHERE THE MONEY GOES

Who and what benefits from campaign funding? Here’s a handy guide. (All numbers are approximate.)

$450 MILLION

Scholarships, graduate support, and professional student support

$450 MILLION

Endowed professorships, headships, and deanships

$300 MILLION

Unrestricted funds for Purdue’s greatest needs

$450 MILLION

Support for the life sciences and interdisciplinary research

$350 MILLION

Physical infrastructure improvements

HUANG YI & KUKA

Purdue Convocations Fall 2015 Artist-in-Residence

In addition to a scheduled performance, Huang Yi led four lecture-demonstrations during his week-long residency. The sessions also allowed ample opportunity for students to participate in Q&A discussions with the artist. Around 275 students attended performances and events connected to a classroom curriculum, such as a panel of faculty in robotics, engineering, and time-based arts discussing the issues, challenges, and opportunities of human-machine interaction.

WHAT CAN YOUR GIFT SUPPORT?

You don’t have to have a Rockefeller-sized bank account to make a difference. Purdue Convocations Development Associate Kate Spanke shared just a few of the ways that gifts of all sizes can make a tangible impact.

$5 allows a student between preschool and twelfth grade to go to a matinee performance at Purdue at no cost. For many students, particularly those from rural areas, this is their first opportunity to attend a live arts performance or be on a college campus.

$10 subsidizes a Purdue or Ivy Tech student to attend a performance connected to a professor’s classroom curriculum.

$100 provides a “transportation scholarship” for one school to pay for the gas, bus rental, and bus drivers to attend a Purdue event.

$1,000 pays for an artist to go to two local schools for a workshop or mini-performance. A single “mini-residency” can open up the arts to 800 students who might not otherwise have access to field trips.

$5,000 funds an artist for a one-week campus residency, with events for students and community members.

FROM LAB TO LAUNCH

Private funding can help turn Purdue’s most promising research into real-world products.

When scientists have a “eureka” moment in their research, Purdue Foundry executive director Greg Deason sees that breakthrough as a starting point. “Technology realizes its true value when it finds its way into the market,” he says. “The discovery has great potential energy, but the kinetic energy comes when it is being adopted and used.”

Take physics professor David Nolte and basic medical sciences professor John Turek. The two developed an analytical tool that helps to rapidly identify the most effective cancer therapies, and teamed up to found Animated Dynamics. The pair have benefited from Foundry assistance and are building a strong company; in 2015, the company received Tech Innovation of the Year honors from the Indiana organization TechPoint. Animated Dynamics isn’t the only Foundry success story: in the past two years alone, the entrepreneurship and commercialization hub has helped create 49 new startup companies based on Purdue intellectual property.

Unlike the Purdue Research Park, which is designed for early-stage companies to get traction and grow, the Foundry is aimed at companies that haven’t yet reached that stage. And private support can make all the difference in getting great ideas off the ground.

For example, says Deason, many companies could dramatically accelerate their work if they had enough funding to develop a quality prototype. Funding might also be used to gain entry to an important trade show where founders can pitch their wares, or pay for travel to share the product with a few valuable customers.

Money isn’t the only way to help these fledgling companies, says Deason. “Alumni with specific areas of expertise may be able to mentor an early-stage company,” he says. “Or they might be able to make introductions to someone at an organization with whom they could do business.”

Purdue’s campaign will help the Foundry think even bigger, says Deason: He’d love the hub to build up enough funding to attract additional entrepreneurs-in-residence who could work closely with these young companies. He’d also like to dramatically increase available seed funding and other investment dollars that would allow Purdue to invest strategically in early-stage companies. If successful, these investments could generate returns that could be recycled into the next generation of new companies.

“We set out to be a leader in helping startups,” says Deason. “Now we’re ready to take our work to a whole new level.”

THE $20 DIFFERENCE

For cash-strapped students, $20 can fund a shopping basket of ramen noodles or a night out on the town. But for Alyssa Begle (HHS’16), president of the Purdue Foundation Student Board (PFSB) and a speech, language, and hearing sciences major from Ferdinand, Indiana, $20 is a chance to think much bigger. During the campaign, students will be encouraged to give financially to the university. How will that happen?

PFSB wants to share with students the importance of philanthropy and also of giving back to a university that has given us endless opportunities. The senior class gift will be promoting a campus-wide donation of $20.16 in honor of someone who has made an impact on their time at Purdue.

Twenty dollars can be a lot of money for a student. Will it be a tough sell? I don’t think so, once they understand the meaning behind it. Students will be able to select an area to donate their money, whether that be an organization, a scholarship, or something else. They will also be able to take time to appreciate other people who have made their Purdue experience so great.

Do students understand the value of that gift? I hope so. The small donation of $20.16 will give back tenfold by the opportunities it grants.

GIVING THE WORLD’S BEST MINDS THE FREEDOM TO EXPLORE

Why do donor-funded endowed professorships matter? Just ask Philip Low, Ralph C. Corley Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, who benefits from the extra funding such professorships provide. “With money that’s not earmarked for a particular project, I can explore exciting new ideas that have great potential to improve human health, long before I can qualify for major grant funding from the National Institutes of Health,” he says.

Here are just some of the ways he’s used the funding in recent years:

Funding two research associates to develop a method to speed bone fracture repair, reducing the time spent in a cast by half.

Funding the development of fluorescent dyes that enable surgeons to see and remove all malignant tissue during cancer surgery.

Supporting research that may allow doctors to determine a patient’s cancer burden from a simple blood sample.

Developing a confocal microscope that allows researchers to reconstruct three-dimensional images of structures in cells.

THE PRESIDENT MAKES HIS CASE

Purdue’s history has shown that Boilermakers don’t just think big. They go big. While the national conversation about higher education costs simmered, President Mitch Daniels didn’t simply contribute to the discussion; he led the country by freezing Purdue’s tuition costs, which will remain at 2013 levels through at least the 2016–17 school year.

Now, to help continue the visionary work he’s started, he’s turned to Boilermakers themselves to further Purdue’s nation-leading efforts to tamp down higher education costs while delivering a high-value education. “$2.019 billion will go a long way in helping us continue to accomplish what we set out to do two years ago through Purdue Moves: deliver higher education at the highest proven value,” he says.

And in a world where many worthy causes compete for alumni generosity, Daniels wants alumni to know that Purdue takes its responsibility to donors seriously. “I hope our donors will have confidence that, when they choose to give financially to Purdue, we are going to be good stewards of their money. We pledge to apply [donor] dollars, when given the discretion, to the enhancements and changes most likely to produce a Purdue even greater than today’s.”

Erin Peterson is a freelance writer.

Read the full article at http://digital.watkinsprinting.com/article/Great+Big+Giving+Guide/2319788/280173/article.html.

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