Campus community thanks Henderson donors

As Henderson State seeks to expand and diversify donor support, the campus community said “thank you” to those who have provided private financial support to the university.

Reddie Donor Day gave students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to express their appreciation Nov. 17 by signing a large gratitude banner, writing postcards to donors, and sharing photos and videos.

“We want our students and employees to understand the importance of campus philanthropy,” said Beth Taggard, annual giving and special events coordinator. “We want them to become engaged in celebrating and thanking the alumni, employees, and friends of Henderson who generously make an investment in the lives of Reddie students and our campus.”

Taggard said she is often asked why a public university needs private donations.

“One reason is the more scholarships we have, the lower we can keep tuition costs,” she said. This year the HSU Foundation gave out almost $400,000 in scholarships, thanks to private donors. Donations also help maintain and furnish various facilities.”

Taggard said there are approximately 850 alumni donors, which is about 3.7 percent of Henderson’s 23,000 active alumni.

“We would like for that to be a lot higher,” she said. “In our strategic plan, we’re aiming for 25 percent giving from alumni. That’s a lofty goal, but I think we can definitely meet it with the Reddie Spirit.”

Last year, Henderson received $1.6 million in donations from foundations, corporations, alumni and friends of Henderson.

Anyone wishing to donate can give online at hsu.edu/give, or give directly to the Henderson Foundation at HSU Box 7550, Arkadelphia, Arkansas, 71999.

Taggard said supporters can specify where they want their donations to be used.

“We want our donors to be engaged with whatever they are giving to. For instance, if they are passionate about the theatre program, we have a Friends of Theatre Fund.” she said. “You can give to any department on campus and those funds will be used accordingly, while donations to the Henderson Fund can be used to meet any immediate campus need.”