Leaving a legacy can help future generations of students

How do you want to be remembered by future generations? May is Leave a Legacy month and a perfect opportunity to start the conversation.

Organized through the Canadian Association of Gift Planners (CAGP), the national campaign encourages individuals to leave a gift through their will or estate to a cause that is meaningful to them.

For Patrick Valeriote (BSc ’89) and his wife Caroline, looking at the big picture of what their life’s legacy will be meant finding a way to pay forward the positive university experiences they had to new generations.

“We have seen first-hand the tremendous pressures and expectations young students face and want to direct our giving toward their health and wellness so that they may better cope and enjoy their time at school,” said Patrick.

Leaving a contribution to Brock University in their will is how the couple plans to give a larger sum without impacting their current lifestyle or finances.

“Making a charitable donation in your will is such a simple, yet effective, way to help improve the lives and experiences of students beyond your lifetime,” said Caroline, adding that the couple worked with a financial advisor to maximize their giving potential.

Patrick and Caroline Valeriote said starting the conversation among younger donors about planned giving is essential because few people realize the tremendous impact a legacy gift can have on students and the University.

One such example is Morgan McJannet, a second-year Social Science student who is benefitting from the William Matheson Bursary.

Established in 1998 upon Professor Matheson’s retirement, the donor-funded bursary is awarded annually to a Political Science student who has a major average of 75 per cent or higher and a demonstrated financial need.

“Financial support is very important to my educational goals of completing an undergraduate degree in International Political Economy and a master’s in Economics, especially because I am living away from home during my time at Brock,” said McJannet. “I am very committed to doing well and with donor support it means I get to expand my interests in international politics and economics.”

In 2017-18, 2,380 undergraduate and graduate students at Brock benefitted from donor-funded scholarships, bursaries and awards worth $4.4 million.

“Student awards and bursaries are essential in supporting students in their access to post-secondary education, their success in their studies and their ability to cross the stage for convocation,” said Pamela Shanks, Executive Director of Development and Alumni Relations. “We are truly grateful to donors who leave a gift in their will to support student awards and other university needs, which profoundly help and benefit students throughout their Brock journey.”

According to Statistics Canada, only seven per cent of charitable Canadians designate gifts in their will or estate plan. The Department of Development and Alumni Relations is available to help individuals considering honouring their legacy at Brock University. For more information, contact Tracy Geoffroy at 905-688-5550 x4519 or tgeoffroy@brocku.ca

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