Every ‘small thing’ helps toward students’ financial support

by Sal Nudo  /   Jan 22, 2014

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Donor Pat Doyle-Grace

Pat Doyle-Grace Ed.M. ’70 supports College of Education scholarships for the same reason others do to help students: She wants to financially assist those who need it as they look to further their education. Doyle-Grace calls her annual $500 gifts since 2011 “a very small thing,” but she realizes how important financial assistance can be these days, saying most students need it because of high tuition costs.

“I have a lot of interest in helping people that need financial assistance, which I guess all students do today, really,” Doyle-Grace said. In fact, this year, after their family contributions and financial aid packages, 33 percent of College of Education students faced unmet financial need.

The Webster Groves, Mo., native is one of more than 850 graduates in the college who contributed to the Annual Fund during fiscal year 2013, gifts that totaled more than $105,000.

“I hope I can help somebody that is struggling to come up with the finances to go to college or continue,” she said.

Doyle-Grace was a high school teacher in Illinois for several years and taught courses at St. Louis Community College, valuing the interaction she had with students.

“I liked helping them discover new ideas and new ways of looking at things,” Doyle-Grace said, “and I liked helping them learn to evaluate and thoroughly investigate different issues.”

Doyle-Grace returns to the Illinois campus every few years to see football games and visit friends. In March, she will begin volunteering as a workshop leader for the University’s Illinois Leadership Center, sharing her experiences and successes with students and offering professional advice.

The College of Education Scholarship Fund is dedicated to building funds to support current students, compete for future scholars, and ensure access to quality education. To learn more about how to support students and programs, contact Lisa Denson-Rives at lkdenson@illinois.edu or 217-300-2752. To make a gift to the college, use this online form.