Faculty & staff become lifesavers
2009 staff/faculty giving campaign
|UFV employees like Karen Evans, Darryl Plecas, and Lori Moren are supporting the LIfesaver campaign, which provides bursaries for students. They wore lifejackets at an employee barbecue to promote the campaign.|
By Melissa Beedle
This year marks UFV’s first staff and faculty giving campaign to raise funds directly for tudents to help them through financial hardships and emergencies.
“These funds will go a long way towards helping students so that they have the opportunity to obtain an education, regardless of their financial circumstances,” says Ryan Koch, acting director of development.
“We have already raised over $17,000 from approximately 60 staff and faculty and we’re only half-way through our campaign [as of fall of 2009]. Having the support of alumni is equally important and we hope that the dedication of our staff and faculty will encourage alumni to support students through bursaries and scholarships.”
As a result of the campaign, students in financial need will have the opportunity to apply to the staff/faculty bursary fund and an emergency fund should they experience serious financial difficulties due to sudden and unexpected situations.
According to Ryan, this campaign will help UFV raise the profile of the urgent need for bursaries and scholarships and show potential donors that staff and faculty support our students.
“This is such a great way to help students, especially when they really need it. It’s particularly important because so often no other money is readily available to students in emergency situations,” says Darryl Plecas, campaign ambassador and the RCMP university research chair in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, who has actively recruited many of his colleagues to support the campaign.
For executive assistant to VP of administration Eleanor Busse-Klassen, supporting students is a personal passion. “I knew I had to get involved in this campaign because I see many staff reaching into their own pockets to help fi nancially struggling students,” says Eleanor, who has been an employee since 1995. The impact of student need While many staff and faculty are acutely aware of student need at UFV, it’s frontline staff like those in the financial aid and awards department who hear story after story of student need.
“I donate through payroll deduction
and while the payments may
not seem like much to some, they
really add up. I’ve created a
scholarship for nursing students
to honour the memories
of my mom and sister.
It truly is a gift to see the looks
on students' faces when
-- UFV employee Sandy Bishop
According to financial aid coordinator Leanne Tielmann, there has also been a spike in the number of students coming into the office who haven’t had to before. These are the students who once had no problem finding a full-time summer job or part-time work during the academic year — this is no longer the case. Not only are students finding themselves without employment, they are also reporting that their parents are dealing with the impact of our slowed economy.
Leanne is grateful that UFV staff and faculty have stepped up to help fill this increasing need. “We could not have successfully launched this campaign without the support of our campaign ambassadors, who helped to promote the campaign in their departments and at UFV’s Welcome Back employee barbecue,” says VP external Robert Buchan. “Without their support, we couldn’t have delivered the message out to so many people. They helped us to raise desperately needed funds.”
UFV president Mark Evered adds: “I am so pleased to discover that the commitment of faculty and staff to student success goes well beyond the classrooms, laboratories, and supporting services. The generous donations by faculty and staff to student bursaries and emergency funding is are a very real demonstration of just how deeply they care about our students.”