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Luncheon Celebrates Philanthropy, Connects Donors and Students

This spring, the Division of Academic and Student Affairs (DASA) hosted its inaugural Endowment and Scholarship Luncheon. The event highlighted the spirit of philanthropy that gives  students the freedom to explore their passions while pursuing an exceptional academic experience. It was also the first such opportunity for the division to bring together donors and the talented students who are greatly impacted by their generous support.

Private support plays a critical role in the division’s ability to fund the programs and services that are essential to the success of NC State students during their time on campus and beyond. Donors who elect to establish endowments and scholarships fill an important need for ongoing financial support. The donors recognized at the luncheon have all chosen to invest in the future of the university by establishing endowments and scholarships on campus. By choosing to make gifts of this nature, they have created lasting legacies, helping to ensure steady financial support and allowing DASA to plan for the future with greater certainty.

During the luncheon, students were seated with the donors who have provided financial support that has been integral to their ability to participate in DASA programs. It brought a sense of personalization to the giving experience, allowing donors to hear how their generosity is shaping the lives of NC State students.

Rising senior Ryan Hardison was selected to share his experience with all attendees. Hardison, who studies chemical engineering and biomanufacturing sciences, is a recipient of the Toni Christine Masini Memorial Marching Band Scholarship Endowment. The Masini Scholarship Endowment was established by Bob and Mickie Masini to honor the life and legacy of their late daughter Toni and the immeasurable impact she had on the music department and arts community at NC State. To be considered for the scholarship, students must be members of the marching band, participate in a solo performance competition, and draft an essay about leadership. Hardison spoke at length about his experiences as a scholarship recipient and the impact that the Masini family has had on his student experience, reducing the financial burden for his family and allowing him the peace of mind to focus on his academic and creative pursuits.

Student fees fund only a portion of the programs and services that play such an important role in helping students achieve success during their time on campus and preparing them for the future. Private donations help support some of the division’s greatest priorities and afford students opportunities to take part in the opportunities that directly correlate to student success, like undergraduate research, the arts, and leadership and community service. As contributors to NC State’s $1.6B Think and Do the Extraordinary Campaign, donors hold an essential role in helping to assure the continued growth and success of the university.