Record donor support in 2009-10 benefits students, faculty, and communities
"It's humbling to me how many alumni, friends, foundations and other partners have illustrated their confidence in the great work and promise of our University by maintaining or increasing their support this past year," Dodenhoff said.
One of those alumni, family practitioner Dr. Larry Winn of Easley, S.C. (1963 and 1965, chemical engineering), recently provided a major planned gift for General Athletic Scholarships. He and his wife, Wraellen, have tailgated at Carolina football games for years. Dr. Winn typically travels to home games now with three or four friends, all Gamecock alumni.
"I was thinking how big in our lives Carolina Athletics has been, providing so much pleasure and enjoyment over the years," Dr. Winn said. "This is a way for us to give back to the University."
It's not the Winns' first planned gift at Carolina: Five years ago, they established the Dr. Larry R. and Wraellen M. Winn Distinguished Professorship in Chemical Engineering.
Retirees Rick and Rory Ackerman chose Columbia as their home because they had always wanted to live within walking distance of a major University. They "adopted" Carolina as their alma mater, providing a major deferred gift benefiting students in three schools: music, the Darla Moore School of Business, and theatre arts in the College of Arts and Sciences. Rick Ackerman, who takes acting classes, makes use of the University's Extended University Program for retirees.
"It has opened so many doors for us, enabled us to build new relationships, and provided numerous opportunities to get involved," he said of their reasons for giving to Carolina.
Adam Habib, a 2004 graduate in English completing a yearlong residency at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif., gives continuously to the University's Annual Fund. He is establishing his own legacy of giving back to his alma mater.
"The University of South Carolina is where I figured out who I was going to be and what I was going to do," said Habib, a Durham, N.C., native. "So I think it's important for me to start giving back to Carolina now, knowing that I'll be able to give more later in life."
The Gamecock Guarantee continues to help provide Carolina educations to in-state, first generation students with the highest need for financial assistance. The program grew from 96 freshmen its first year to 125 last year, thanks to University general scholarship funds, a Southeastern Conference TV contract, and a growing group of donors providing more support.
"I hope to become a state senator in 2020, when I turn 30," said Gamecock Guarantee recipient Chadwick Devlin, an Honors College student. "Without the Gamecock Guarantee and the financial resources it provides, I would not be able to reach my greatest potential."