Ball recognizes donors, scholarship recipients

Matthew White

Kent State announced it would receive more than $20 million in commitments for scholarship support and gifts at its annual Founders Scholars Ball Saturday.

“The ball highlighted commitments that have been made over the past year, gifts or intended gifts, which will be available to award in the future,” said Slyvia Bustard, assistant director of student financial aid.

According to information provided to attendees, “The 15th annual Founders Scholars Ball extended gratitude to individuals who have made philanthropic commitments of $100,000 or more and to corporations and foundations for gifts and grants of $250,000 or more.”

Bustard said the ball is an opportunity for Kent State to recognize donors as well as student scholarship recipients.

“We invite all senior Founders Scholars and give them a chance to meet the donors and express their gratitude,” she said.

Senior accounting major Melissa Schlotterer expressed her appreciation for donors at the ball. She said she spoke about three donors: Olga A. Mural, whose donation went to the baseball program and baseball scholarships; Victoria and Gerald Reed, whose donation went to increase archival space in the library; and Roe Green, whose donation went to a capital project for the School of Theatre and Dance.

Schlotterer said it’s important for scholarship recipients to meet the donors.

“The donors aren’t just opening their pocketbooks,” she said. “It allows the donors to see what we’ve done.”

Kent State President Lester Lefton praised the Founders’ donors in a press release.

“They (Founders Scholars) are here as a result of the generosity of donors, who themselves have worked hard in order to receive an education, build a career, and safeguard funds for generations,” he said.

Bustard said the ball is a way for the university community to give back to donors.

“It’s the one chance we get each year to recognize how important individual donor’s philanthropy is,” she said.

Since the Founders Scholars Program began in 1991, donors have committed more than $13 million for four-year scholarships to freshmen. In all, full or partial scholarships have been awarded to more than 550 students through the Founders Scholars Program.

Contact student affairs reporter Matthew White at [email protected].