The Message: Give, Give, Give


by Michelle Zimmerman & Victoria Jones

The Office of Advancement has started a new initiative to raise awareness about how important financial assistance to the college is – and it is eye-catching and gold.

Gold tags recently highlighted campus to mark the importance of financial support to the college and its students.

“Sponsored by the advancement office, the 2010 Simpson College philanthropy initiative is a student-led program which helps create awareness about how critical financial support is to the college and student life,” Advancement Associate Sara Roeser said.

Junior Becky Pietig got involved because of her Integrated Marketing Communications practicum. As a student, Pietig now better understands how important funding is.

“Most people do not realize how expensive it is to have the little extra things around Simpson campus that we use every day,” Pietig said. “Everyone walks by a desk, a couch, or a pool table without realizing that someone had to pay for [the] item so that the students can benefit from its use.”

Funding for the college and its students comes from many different people and organizations.

“Private financial support comes from alumni, corporations, foundations, trustees, friends, non-alum parents, the United Methodist Church and the Iowa College Foundation,” Roeser said. “Additional funding is provided by the restricted operating budget, capital and Simpson’s endowment.”

This money is then put into the Simpson Fund which is the college’s annual fund.

“This unrestricted fund puts money where it’s needed most,” Roeser said. “Areas supported by the Simpson Fund include scholarships, faculty retention and recruitment, technological advancements, the arts, athletics and library and the overall betterment of campus life.”

The importance of this money is unknown to many, but has been used in the past and is being used by present undergraduates, and will be used by future students to come.

“99 [percent] of students receive financial assistance and without it, many wouldn’t be able to attend Simpson,” Roeser said.

Pietig offers a student perspective on the Simpson Fund.

“The Simpson Fund provides us with a good lifestyle here at Simpson, and we take it for granted,” Pietig said. “If we want the tradition to continue then we need to do our part in giving back. We need to carry on the Simpson Experience.”

After the gold tags were put up around campus, many students showed curiosity in the program.

“The tags really interested me and made me wonder what they were,” junior Jessica Fox said. “I’m grateful to the people that are willing to donate to make sure that we get the best out of Simpson.”

The Simpson College philanthropy initiative program asks students to keep their eyes and inboxes open in the near future for a survey about the gold tags.

The gold tags aren’t the only way the program plans to spread awareness.

“You’ll have to wait and see,” Roeser said. “We don’t want to give it all away, but we plan to keep it visual and perhaps offer a competitive touch to future events.”