set an example for its students on how to accomplish your goals, and how to do it early.
Two years early to be exact.
The college has exceeded its $20 million goal for its “You Make the Difference: The Campaign for Stockton College” two years early, the college said in a release Monday afternoon, April 23.
Stockton College President Herman J. Saatkamp made the initial announcement during the 32nd annual Stockton College Scholarship Gala at the Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa Saturday night, April 21. The campaign supports all aspects of Stockton’s mission, programming, facilities, and student scholarships.
“The Gala is always a night to celebrate and this year we have an extra incentive to do so,” Saatkamp said. “Our community and our alumni responded in an overwhelmingly positive way to our first comprehensive campaign. The philanthropic support of Stockton and our students is real and tangible, helping deserving students receive quality education and attain their degrees.”
The goal to raise $20 million was set for June 13, 2014 last September when the school kicked off its 40th Anniversary of Teaching celebration. Several and the help of the community contributed to the school reaching that goal well ahead of schedule.
However, that doesn't mean the school is going to stop. According to Saatkamp, Stockton will continue to accept gifts through the original goal date, and hopes to raise an additional $2 million in that time.
He added that while New Jersey's public colleges have seen a decline in state funding over the last 20 years, "the campaign’s importance had never been greater as many families are currently struggling to pay for higher education in a difficult economy."
"Many of our students are highly qualified, yet would not have the opportunity to pursue their education and aspirations were it not for scholarships and grants,” Saatkamp said. “As a result, private support of Stockton is more important than ever. Our community has responded to the challenge in a significant way.”
"As excited and grateful as we are to exceed our goal; we aim to keep the momentum going into the months ahead,” said Dr. Philip T. Ellmore, Chief Development Officer. “The need for scholarship funding has not abated.”
More than 650 attendees took part in Saturday's gala, according to the school. The gala included fine dining, entertainment and a silent auction, and raised over $450,000, a Stockton spokesperson said.
Actual student scholarship recipients took part in the program, according to Stockon. Several of their stories were highlighted to provide attendees with examples of how their contributions make a difference, the school said.