SPARTANBURG, S.C. – College life – with tough classes and schedules along with new social situations and adjustments – can be a difficult time for students. It can become even more trying if a significant life event, such as the death of a parent or guardian or a family’s loss of income or any number of situations, threatens a student’s ability to continue his or her studies because of financial hardships.
Wofford College is committed to student success, so the college makes personnel and resources available to students in emergency situations.
Now, with the help of a $300,000 grant from The Daniel-Mickel Foundation, the college can offer even more assistance. Under a new fund called OneWofford, students impacted by major life events that could negatively affect their success will be able to receive scholarships to assist them. The grant is paired with a $50,000 matching grant from the college’s Trustee Matching Fund. OneWofford will be available to receive additional annual contributions of any size from others committed to assisting students through extreme circumstances; it will be activated in January 2018.
“This newly endowed fund will help ensure success for all Wofford students and demonstrates the care and support of the Wofford family and friends for our students,” says Wofford President Nayef Samhat. “We are so grateful to The Daniel-Mickel Foundation for this partnership to boost the success of Wofford students and power their futures through a liberal arts education.”
“The Daniel-Mickel Foundation is very pleased to support Wofford and its students,” says Charles Mickel, trustee of the foundation. “Financial concerns for students will always be present in college. We hope we can help keep some students from falling through the cracks and dropping out when unforeseen financial difficulties arise. The foundation has provided similar gifts to two other regional universities, and we wanted to do the same for Wofford students. We also hope the recipients of these funds will become strong alumni of Wofford and will pay forward this gift with their own generosity.”
Wofford will use software it already has acquired in its proactive approach toward academic success that links student to campus resources and notifies students, advisors and other faculty and staff members of important events relating to a student’s success. Through the software, called Starfish, students also easily can alert faculty and staff if they have these family issues and need help because of them.
“A significant negative life event can occur at any time during a student’s matriculation –but that should not be an obstacle in the path to graduation,” says Dr. Boyce Lawton, dean of student success. “Wofford’s partnership with The Daniel-Mickel Foundation will offer students a new scholarship resource that helps allay their worries during a particularly difficult time and allows them to concentrate on their studies rather than on their ability to pay college costs. This fund represents Wofford’s commitment to student success and compassion for all who are part of the campus community.”