More donors give to Goshen College, despite a difficult economy

GOSHEN, Ind. – More donors gave gifts to Goshen College during the 2008-09 fiscal year – which ended June 30 – than the previous year, even in a difficult economic climate which hit Elkhart County, Ind., particularly hard.

President James E. Brenneman said, “In a year when many of our friends and alumni faced difficult financial circumstances themselves – including how to balance the very real needs of unemployed neighbors – we are humbled and encouraged by the increases in giving participation rates from all of our stakeholders, including students themselves. They stepped up to give what they were able, so that a Goshen College education continues to be an affordable option for students.”

Vice President for Institutional Advancement William A. Jones said the college had its best senior class giving participation rate in 10 years (46 percent, 2 percent higher than last year); the best faculty-staff giving participation rate in 14 years (57 percent, 13.6 percent higher than last year); and back-to-back years of increases in alumni giving percentages, halting a 10-year decline. And of particular note is that 34.3 percent of alumni living in Elkhart County – which is home to the college and has the largest concentration of alumni in the country – gave to the college, compared with 27.3 percent of all alumni.

During this fiscal year, Jones reported that the unrestricted Goshen College Fund reached a total of $1,900,211, which is higher than the college’s three-year average. In 2007-08, this same fund reached a 15-year high of $2,119,388. Gifts to the Goshen College Fund directly support the collegeÕs operating budget, which provides more student financial aid than the entire amount of the fund.

Overall giving to Goshen College totaled $3,519,801 in contributions. This total includes the GC Fund as well as gifts for specific purposes or the endowment. Contributing toward the overall giving were 4,731 total donor households, 242 more than last year. One hundred percent of the 14 members of the college’s Board of Directors contributed, as did all 18 members of the college’s Alumni Board.

“We are blessed by the deep and exceptional expressions of generosity by all of our supporters in these times of economic uncertainty,” Jones said, “and we are so thankful for all the gifts, prayers and encouragement we have received this year.”

Learn more about giving to Goshen College at or by calling (574) 535-7558.

Editors: For more information about this release or to arrange an interview, contact Goshen College News Bureau Director Jodi H. Beyeler at (574) 535-7572 or


Goshen College, established in 1894, is a residential Christian liberal arts college rooted in the Anabaptist-Mennonite tradition. The college’s Christ-centered core values – passionate learning, global citizenship, compassionate peacemaking and servant-leadership – prepare students as leaders for the church and world. Recognized for its unique Study-Service Term program, Goshen has earned citations of excellence in Barron’s Best Buys in Education, “Colleges of Distinction,” “Making a Difference College Guide” and U.S.News & World Report‘s “America’s Best Colleges” edition, which named Goshen a “least debt college.” Visit