“I think our goal should be for all students, scholarship or not, to be able to focus stress-free on academics.”
That’s Susan Woodward Hunnewell ’70 explaining why she is establishing an endowed scholarship at the University.
“I know how lucky I was,” she says. “I went through four years of college without anxiety about tuition and room-and-board costs.”
Hunnewell is talking about intention. She simply wants future Laurentians to experience St. Lawrence like she did, as a joyful, formative place.
This intention is shared by so many alumni; it has become a recognizable thread that runs through almost all philanthropic giving to the University—especially among Laurentians who give to support student scholarships.
Charlotta Chung ’08 put it simply, “I want to invest in students.”
Other Laurentians invested in her, she says, and she knows the impact it can make.
“I received significant aid to come to SLU, and it was important to me that I pay it forward now that I am in a position to do so.”
Chung says funding Laurentian scholarships is also a meaningful way to recognize her family, her alma mater, and their contributions to her success.
“I want to honor my grandmother,” she says. “She really loved St. Lawrence from the minute we went to Accepted Student Day. I wouldn’t have been able to attend without help from her and my grandfather. I wouldn’t be where I am today without St. Lawrence, so I want to give back.”
Kristin Bennet Gray ’95 and Jordan Gray ’95 established a scholarship after their experience at St. Lawrence.
“It’s where we made many of our fondest memories and closest friends. I was an athlete and, after graduation, a McCurdy-Sprague Trustee. So we’re passionate about giving in hopes that others have experiences similar to ours.”
Making an Impact
The impact of student scholarships at St. Lawrence can’t be overstated. More academically gifted students have been able to attend St. Lawrence—and realize their aspirations.
Florence Hines is the University’s vice president and dean of admissions and financial aid. She has seen what these funds can do.
“For some students,” she says, “a merit scholarship is well-deserved recognition for outstanding achievement throughout high school. It acknowledges a student’s success and anticipates how those accomplishments will evolve even further at St. Lawrence.”
Scholarships can convince some prospective students to visit campus. “We all know how easy it is to fall in love with St. Lawrence once you’ve been here,” she says. This resource helps the University attract students from across the country.
For other students, she adds, the idea of a St. Lawrence education is a dream to be reached.
“We don’t want cost to prohibit that,” Hines says. “Need-based scholarships and grants make the University more accessible. Every dollar invested in a St. Lawrence scholarship program allows us to create a first-year class where unique talents can be brought together without limits based on income.”
Every student scholarship is a statement, she adds.
“Each one is the combined voices of alumni, parents, faculty, and staﬀ saying, ‘We care about St. Lawrence. We want more exceptional students to become Laurentians and care for this place like we do.’”