Spring/Summer Issue 2015

by Lynne Haley, senior director of development

When I think of our graduates, one word comes to mind—pride. I feel pride when I see them enter our program here at WSU and grow to become confident veterinarians, surgeons, and professionals when they graduate. I’m proud of them when they are hired for their first jobs, and when they succeed in their careers.

I also feel pride when I think of how many of our alumni give back to the college. Our graduates are some of the most loyal and have some of the highest giving participation rate of any WSU alumni. There are countless examples of generosity, but I wanted to list just a few.

  • As their senior gift, this year’s graduating class of 2015 gave over $2000 to the MRI campaign fund. The DVM class of 2018 has already started a scholarship fund as their senior gift to the college.
  • Students who received scholarships with a “moral obligation” stipulation, meaning they agree to pay them pack, are paying them back even earlier than requested, which means they are being paid forward for our students who need them today.
  • Alumni have established endowments of $25,000 or more to support areas they believe are important in veterinary medical education today.
  • Other alumni have given back in honor of a beloved teacher, or added us to their estate plans.
  • One alumna has given $250 a year to add to the scholarship she received as a student.

Shawn Sanders (’09 DVM) is also one such alumnus. As you will read in the supporter profile, Shawn and his wife started a student scholarship just a few short years after his graduation. It was something they’d plan to do while he was a student, but after seeing the story of fellow WSU graduate, Aaron Gibbons (’11 DVM), they decided the time was now. The Shawn and Heather Sanders Support the Family Scholarship is awarded to students of any year who have family obligations, are interested in mixed or large animal medicine, and are gainfully employed.

We often hear from students that WSU is a special place. I believe it is, in part, the generous spirit of our students and alumni that help to make our college so extraordinary.