We must invest in our students,” says Campaign Chair Steve Pryor ’71. Nothing is more critical to Lafayette’s future than ensuring that the College can attract and retain a competitive student body. “If Lafayette wants to be regarded as among the very best colleges in America, we have to have the very best students, those at or near the top of their class,” Pryor says. “Engaged, motivated, and ambitious, they want to do something special with their lives, even though they don’t know yet what that might be. But some of the very best students can’t afford a Lafayette education.”
That’s why a key component of the Live Connected, Lead Change campaign is to raise $60 million for need-based and merit-based financial aid.
Mary Higgins ’15, recipient of the national Goldwater Scholarship in support of her interest in biomedical genetic research, says, “I knew I wanted to go to a smaller school where I could interact with my professors and have great research opportunities. The Marquis Scholarship makes Lafayette financially possible, but more important than that, it provides a community of support through faculty mentors and peer events. I was also able to do EXCEL research in my first year – research that has grown into a senior thesis and, hopefully, a published paper.”
During the 2014-15 academic year, over half of Lafayette’s students are receiving assistance through the College’s financial-aid program. College-funded scholarships, grants, work opportunities, and loans total more than $41 million.
This includes approximately $7 million generated by more than 550 named scholarships that are part of Lafayette’s permanent endowment or are funded through restricted annual gifts. Named scholarships reflect the concern and the generosity of the many alumni and friends who are committed to keeping a Lafayette education within the reach of the most deserving students, regardless of their personal financial circumstances. During the campaign, more than 70 named scholarships have been have been added to the College’s permanent endowment or established through restricted annual gifts.