AmerenUE Pledges $5,000 in Support of Fulton Colleges Fund

Tom Riley and AmerenUE employeesAmerenUE is showing its support for the Fulton Colleges Fund Drive by pledging a $5,000 lead gift, twice the amount ever received before.


“It is a pleasure to be associated with the Fulton Colleges Fund Drive,” David Neterer, Callaway Plant director, said.


“Supporting our educational institutions in Callaway County is one of the ways to build our future leaders—by opening the doors to many opportunities for entering our country’s workforce.”


Organizers will kick off the 2009 Fulton Colleges Fund Drive Tuesday (Aug. 11), with a breakfast for volunteers in Aldridge Recreation Center of William Woods University.


Volunteers will call on area businesses and individuals during the week. Their goal is to raise $55,000 to benefit Callaway County students who attend Westminster College or William Woods University. 


“AmerenUE has been an invaluable member of our community for decades,” Tom Riley, president of Fulton Colleges Board of Associates, said. “We are extremely grateful that AmerenUE has generously pledged the largest grant in the history of the Board of Associates, and that they are challenging our past donors and potential donors to join them in supporting the annual fund drive.”


He added, “This is a wonderful show of support that will definitely have an impact on our 2009 totals and our goal to increase scholarships.”


Earlier this year the Fulton Colleges Board of Associates announced major changes in an effort to provide more college opportunities to local students. The board plans to increase the number of scholarships from 16 to 24.


For more than 40 years, the Board of Associates has connected Callaway County with William Woods University and Westminster College by providing hundreds of scholarships that have enabled local students to attend the two institutions.


In a continuing effort to provide assistance to students in Callaway County, the board plans to offer eight new scholarships for $2,000 in fall 2010. These will be in addition to the eight $1,500 scholarships and the eight $3,000 scholarships already given out annually. This means that each year, starting in 2010, the Board of Associates would offer 24 scholarships, totaling $52,000.


With the cooperation of the schools, the BOA has added the first of what will be eight new scholarships, in addition to what was already provided.


Riley commented, “Anything we can do to provide our children with more educational opportunities is vitally important. More education, more training and more skills are the key to greater prosperity.”


Board of Associates dinners, which previously had been held twice a year, will now be held annually, so that more money can be allotted to scholarships. As a community organization operated and organized for educational purposes, the board was incorporated as a nonprofit corporation this year and will be a 501(c)(3) public charity.


Despite the changes, “Membership revenue is at its highest level ever,” Riley said, “and a higher percentage of membership revenue than ever before goes directly to scholarships.”


Preliminary results of the Fulton Colleges Fund Drive will be reported during a luncheon Friday (Aug. 14) at Mueller Leadership Hall on the Westminster College campus.


“With the changes in the Board of Associates this year, we are very pleased we can begin offering even more scholarships to local students than ever before,” Riley said.  “It’s our hope that, with the generous support of AmerenUE, our college fund drive will raise enough money that we can increase the amount of each scholarship going forward.  In tough economic times, it is always hard to raise money, but, frankly, there’s never a more important time to support our local students and schools.”


The Fulton Board of Associates has sponsored an annual fund drive to secure local support for Westminster and William Woods since the fall of 1967. Each year, more than 90 volunteers lend their time, calling on businesses and individual contributors.


Very few communities of comparable size show this type of dedication and commitment.  


The money raised is divided equally between the two institutions, and the gifts help fund scholarships for outstanding students in Callaway County.


Students receiving scholarships at William Woods University for 2009-2010 are: Ryan Back, Sam Binkley, Jacob Harrison, Harrison Jones, Molly Nichols, Cheryl Perkins, Ashlee Schlueter and Megan Stieferman.


Scholarship recipients at Westminster College are: Susannah Bailey, Stephanie Beamer Kristin Brownawell, Morgan Campbell, Thomas Cunningham, Rachel Davis, James Jones and Grant Portra.


Contributions of any amount are welcome for the Fulton Colleges Fund. In addition