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Students First! News and Updates

January 2013 Thanks for giving to Students First!


In this issue:



We’re not there yet, but we get a little closer every day

Manchester has raised $83,196,031 for the Students First! campaign on our way to the $100 million goal. Each day, more alumni and friends join the effort to strengthen the University for years to come.

There are projects that speak to every donor’s heart. Do you love the Chime? Help build a Chime tower in the historic heart of campus. Did you play a Spartan sport? Then cheer for the PERC project. Were you one of the thousands of Manchester alumni who needed scholarships to go to college? Pay it forward with an endowed scholarship or a gift to The Manchester Fund.

Here’s the most powerful gift of all: general endowment. Manchester’s endowment is a permanent asset invested to earn income and designed to endure through perpetuity. The endowment secures the University’s future and provides a steady stream of revenue. And Manchester’s endowment is considerably smaller than those of many colleges our size.
“A lot of people don’t think of a general endowment gift because it’s not as visible,” says Michael Eastman, vice president for university advancement, “but it is the best gift Manchester could possibly receive.” The gift itself is never spent. It is invested wisely. Though some of the earnings are used for the University’s greatest needs at the time, the rest are reinvested to grow the principal.

So if you don’t know which Students First! gift is the best for you, consider the general endowment. It’s the gift that never stops giving. What could be better than that?

Learn more at




Where your Manchester Fund dollar goes

Manchester junior Kristen Hoffman (left, in red) stands with two friends at the Ba’hai temple.

It’s natural – even smart – to care about how your gifts are used.

So here’s some reassuring news: When you give a hard-earned dollar to The Manchester Fund, it works just as hard as you do. Your dollars educate deserving students. They create an environment where students learn and thrive. And they support a range of experiences that enrich students’ lives.

Meet Kristen Hoffman ’14. She’s a junior sociology major from Goessel, Kan., and a fourth-generation Spartan. Kristen makes the most of a Manchester Fund dollar. She recently returned from a semester in India through BCA Study Abroad – an experience she says turned her “whole world upside down.” Kristen worked at Krupa, a mission that helps India’s “destitute and downtrodden.” Primarily, she taught conversational English to young adults. “It is totally life-changing,” Kristen says, “to be in a place where ‘developing’ is the norm.”

Rather than help Kristen narrow a career path, India actually broadened her thinking. And that’s a good thing, she says. After graduation, Kristen hopes to enter Brethren Volunteer Service for a year before employment or graduate school.

Until then, Kristen is immersed in student life activities such as Simply Brethren and the Kenapocomoco Coalition, which explores issues of peace and social justice. She’s a pianist who has shared her talent with Timbercrest residents and guests at the community dinner. She plays for fun, too, in intramural athletics.

Kristen has found a second home at Manchester and is making the most of every opportunity. Inside or outside the classroom, says Kristen, “I learn anywhere.” Her Manchester education is helping to shape Kristen as an adult and providing experiences that she “will be able to draw upon for the rest of my life.”

Your Manchester Fund dollar has a face on it. In fact, it has 1,300 faces. One of them is Kristen Hoffman’s.

Support the The Manchester Fund or other campaign initiatives at




Zabrian (right) with fellow Manchester student Wes Heath. They both worked last summer at the Wisconsin Lions Camp.

Zabrian Mills ’14 has a passion for helping people. From his campus responsibilities to his summer job to his future career, he enjoys making life better for others.

So it’s not surprising that Zabrian spent last summer working at the Wisconsin Lions Camp, which provides a camping experience for children with a variety of issues, including vision and hearing impairments, Down syndrome, autism, Asperger syndrome, epilepsy and diabetes.

“It’s the hardest job I’ve ever done,” reflected the Alexandria, Ind., native. He took care of five to eight special-needs children in his cabin at a given time. In exchange, he learned sign language, patience and a deeper appreciation for his own life.

For now, that life is centered at Manchester. Zabrian chose it over other schools because he liked the professors and the sense of community he found here. The generous financial aid was crucial. “Without scholarships, I wouldn’t be at Manchester,” adds Zabrian, who is the first person in his family to attend college.

A psychology major with a concentration in cognitive neuroscience, Zabrian is considering a career as a neurosurgeon or, perhaps, as the administrator of a treatment facility. The brain fascinates him. He’s hoping that this summer he can land an internship that allows him to work with people suffering from traumatic brain injuries.

In the meantime, his Manchester plate is full. He’s a resident assistant for first-year students in Garver Hall where, he says, he can help younger students navigate college life and make good choices. He’s also a co-facilitator for the campus organization United Sexualities and he serves on the Student Alumni Council. And when neurosurgery might be in your future, there’s a whole lot of studying.

Manchester has become Zabrian’s second home. He’s grateful for the support he found here – for people who believe he can be a neurosurgeon or anything else he chooses to be. “One of the kindest things you can do for someone,” he says, “is to help give them an education.”

Support other MU students like Zabrian at

Read more stories about MU students >




Scholarship a tribute to parents’ love and support

Manchester graduate David Sutton ’63 often reflects on the sacrifices his late parents made to put him through college. Now the retired college professor has found a way to say “thank you.”

Sutton established the Carl and Frances Sutton Scholarship at Manchester University, an endowed fund supporting the Students First! campaign. There is no better way, Sutton believes, to pay tribute to his parents who worked so hard to educate him.

Carl and Frances Sutton worked blue-collar jobs in Miami County Ind., for years before they opened a cafeteria in downtown Peru. They worked at the cafeteria all day and brought home the business paperwork at night. Their long hours enabled David to become the first person in their family to attend college.

David Sutton fell in love with college the day he arrived at Manchester. He drank deeply and thirstily from the liberal arts well of ideas. He met new friends from diverse backgrounds and from exotic countries. He learned to see the world through different lenses. And he admired Manchester faculty like Eldon Burke, Paul Keller and T. Wayne Rieman so much that he followed in their footsteps.

After graduating in 1963, Sutton earned his Ph.D. at Indiana University before joining the faculty of Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C. He taught political science there for 33 years.

Sutton’s scholarship will help deserving students at Manchester. He plans to add to the fund’s principal each year, in addition to his annual gift to The Manchester Fund.

These are challenging times, says Sutton, for private colleges and universities and the students who attend them. “My education has really enhanced the quality of my life, made it richer,” says Sutton. He’s grateful for that, and for the parents who helped make it possible.

Join Dave Sutton in supporting Students First! at

Make a gift online to Students First! The Campaign for Manchester >