With this year being the sesquicentennial anniversary for the institution, the bar has been raised to new heights, and the ESU Foundation is taking steps to ensure a positive college experience for students and faculty.
One of the ways Emporia State plans to continue its success in the coming years is through preparation. Specifically, the foundation is preparing to launch a new fundraising campaign devoted to the students and staff of the university.
DenaSue Potestio, president of the foundation, said she has seen first-hand what the community and ESU are capable of producing.
“We work with our alumni and friends of the university who have a heart for Emporia State, who have a connection to Emporia State and who have a heart to give,” Potestio said.
Potestio also said this idea for a fundraising campaign is still in the works, but it is receiving a bit of outside help.
“What we’ve done is conducted a feasibility study, where we hired a firm named the J.F. Smith Group and we asked them to assess our readiness to go out and raise money for Emporia State,” Potestio said.
After obtaining the results from the study, the ESU Foundation determined there were key areas that needed an increase in funds.
The new campaign will be aimed at meeting needs in areas involving opportunities for students, improved living and learning environments, strengthening faculty and athletics and endowing funding toward continued excellence.
“Now we can have more money go to programs like cross country and sports in general,” said Brian Mosier, freshman mathematics and statistics major.
For students on campus this means increases in scholarships and more money going towards the cost of education.
“I think it’s great that the school is getting more funding for scholarship money,” said Rachel Brokaw, freshman elementary education major. “I came to Emporia because of how affordable it was so now I’m glad there are more opportunities for us.”
After such positive feedback from many students, faculty members and the Emporia community, the foundation’s Executive Committee voted Aug. 14 to begin planning for a working goal of $45,351,863. This would make it the largest investment in ESU history.
If the number seems very clear-cut, take a look at the final four numbers – 1863, the year ESU was founded as Kansas State Normal School.
Last, Potestio said the campaign will not be something that ends quickly, and the ESU Foundation is looking forward to what the future has in store for the institution.
“The campaign we’re looking at will be a campaign lasting from four to six or five and seven years,” Potestio said.
The ESU Foundation, Potestio and ESU President, Dr. Michael Shonrock are ready to continue to make the university a better place while keeping traditions strong.