"The tax advantages and the income for my wife and I were factors in selecting a gift annuity," said Peter Kostantacos'48. "But equally important, however, was the gift to the College. I've always wanted to do something more substantial than my annual giving."
Beginning in 1955, Kostantacos provided steady financial support to Beloit on an annual basis. To honor his 60th reunion, he decided to make a much bigger statement. He transferred ownership of common stock shares to establish a sizable charitable gift annuity to benefit Beloit College.
Virginia Olga Skinner'49 established the Ralph C. Huffer Professorship to honor Prof. Huffer's excellence in teaching and advising. It also gave her the satisfaction of seeing important facets of her own Beloit experience replicated for new generations of students.
"I am very happy to have Prof. Huffer recognized for the remarkable person he always was," said Prof. Skinner, who was herself a mathematics professor for over 41 years. "He was always my favorite professor. He made mathematics fun. Because of his teaching, I found all later applications easy."
"Our senior class felt very strongly about what our class gift should accomplish," says class gift co-chair Laura Grube'08. "We identified an area of need where our gift could supplement College resources and directly benefit students." The class of 2008 raised more than $25,500 to create the Off-Campus Education Endowed Fund.
The Off-Campus Education Endowed Fund will support off-campus study, which includes both domestic and study abroad programs. More than 40 percent of this year's graduating class has participated in an off-campus study experience. "We all know classmates whose education has been greatly enriched by these opportunities and we wanted to help keep that spirit going," says class gift co-chair Nik Schuetz'08.
David Kassing'55 says his reason for the gift is simple. "My Beloit education gave me an excellent basis for my professional career, and the gift of the poetry books was but a small signal of my appreciation."
A collection of childhood memories is connected with an $85,000 poetry collection that has found a home at Beloit College.
Jared Dornburg'61 believed that every success that came to him was owed to Beloit College.
When the late Jared Dornburg'61 stepped onto Beloit's campus, he made a leap into a wider world. He was among the first Beloiters to study abroad with the advent of the World Outlook Program, Beloit's precursor to today's International Education program, and his 35-year career in international banking took him around the world … and back to Beloit.
"I want Beloit's facilities to be on par with - or better than - what other schools have," says James J. Flood'49.
Twenty years ago, Beloit's Sport Center was among the best such college facilities in the country. Today, a new gift commitment and fund-raising effort will keep the center at the top of its game.
Judith Siess'69 is not alone in her campaign to strengthen interdisciplinary studies, but her contributions stand apart in the way they revive and pay homage to elements of the Beloit Plan.
The author of The One-Person Library newsletter is on a one-person crusade to strengthen interdisciplinary studies at Beloit College.
"We think it is crucial to reward students who excel at Beloit, and to do it in the name of two of Beloit's finest. The Wirtzes were devoted to careers involving substantial service, not just to Beloit, but to all people they encountered and to the government and the country. We think they would value the way the scholarship encourages individual students."
"We are thrilled to leave behind a legacy that will provide scholarships to benefit future generations of underrepresented students."
When asked to give something back to the College that they would soon leave, members of the class of 2007 took the charge to heart. They raised more than $30,000, the largest senior class gift in more than a decade, to create an endowed scholarship fund.
"I hope the International Education Venture Fund attracts students who can dream a bit and take a chance to try things. They will learn that things can really happen when they do."
For Betty Rearick Chenoweth'55, life is all about connections – among ideas, generations, cultures and alma mater. These connections, she believes, are likely to make a difference in the future.