Third annual Step Up for State raises funding for school projects, scholarships


Filled with dollar bills and change, Step Up for State put out jars Oct. 3 for each college participating in the fundraiser.
Photo By Abby Gutierrez

Abby Gutierrez

Texas State’s third annual Step Up for State fundraiser raised over $250,000 between Oct. 3 and 4 for various school projects, scholarships and organizations.

Step Up for State is a donating event held at Texas State University to raise money for student scholarships and projects. With jars filled with bills and a website ready for donations, the event raised $250,502 from 3,252 donations.

The event lasted from Oct. 3-4 for 1,899 minutes, based off the year Texas State was established. At the end of the event, organizations and projects were able to walk away with the all of the donations they received.

According to the Step Up for State webpage, the Alumni and Future Student Center received the most money with $42,309 and the Musical Theater Scholarship had the most donations with 436 gifts.

Assistant Director of Annual Giving Andrew Henley said the event encouraged all students, faculty, and alumni to support the various projects, programs and colleges.

“(Step Up for State) allows alumni, donors, and friends of the institution to go and select projects from across campus,” Henley said. “It gives people the chance to pick and choose, which is really great because it shines a light on programs you don’t typically hear about.”

Fifty-one projects were showcased for donation this year, compared to the 24 last year. Henley said the committee more than doubled the number of projects this year to give donors a wider selection of programs to support.

“We have so many wonderful things going on at Texas State that we really wanted to expand and be able to showcase them all,” Henley said. “Everything from studying chimpanzees in Senegal to study abroad campaigns in Costa Rico as well as scholarships for people who’ve passed away, there’s something for everybody.”

The Alumni and Future Student Welcome Center raised the most money with $42,309, according to the Step Up for State webpage. Alumni Relations Director Kim Gannon said the donations will help continue production toward the new space at LBJ accommodating both prospective students and returning alumni.

“As part of our new space, there will be a big multi-purpose room that can accommodate about 85 people, so that’s where they’ll show the video of Texas State and engage our prospective students,” Gannon said. “It’s going to be a great spot for (alumni) to come and visit and check in.”

The Musical Theater Scholarship raised the greatest number of donations with 436 gifts, according to the Step Up for State webpage. Project leader Kaitlin Hopkins said the musical theater program is looking to invest in current and future students within the program through scholarships.

“The goal was to launch a scholarship fund that will be part of an endowed scholarship account,” Hopkins said. “One of the things that are going to be important for sustainability in terms of continued success was being able to recruit top talent from across the country. We need scholarship money to do that.”

Ana Puig, musical theater junior, oversaw the advertisement and social media presence for the Musical Theater Scholarship project. Puig said she was amazed at the number of funds the project raised and at the people who openly supported their cause.

“Today we raised over $13,500, and it was absolutely amazing,” Puig said. “It made me feel so fulfilled, and it was so humbling and amazing to see all of these sweet people who have never met us come together and support our program.”

Alumni Association President Ernie Dominguez has donated to Step Up for State all three years it’s been in progress. Dominguez said he has a personal reason as to why he continues to support Texas State students and projects.

“Without the scholarships I received, I would not have been able to attend Texas State,” Dominguez said. “So, it’s really important to me that I continue to give and stay involved so I can give back and help other future Bobcats have a chance to go to Texas State.”

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