By: Hailey Wood, Staff Writer
At the beginning of March, the USM Class of 2019 will began raising $2,019 towards the USM Student Emergency Fund in order to unlock an additional $20,000 donated by Martin’s Point Healthcare.
The challenge is the Class of 2019 must meet their goal by May 8 to receive the additional $20,000.
Seniors who donate or raise $2.19 will receive a Class of 2019 pin.
Seniors who donate or raise $20.19 will receive a Class of 2019 pin and a green philanthropy cord to wear at graduation.
Faculty who donate or raise $20.19 they will receive a green philanthropy cord as well.
In just the first day of fundraising, the class had managed to raise roughly $298, 14% of their goal. The progress of the fundraising can be followed at usm.maine.edu/classgift.
The money will be donated to the Student Emergency Fund that supports students at USM going through a financial struggle. The fund covers emergency medical expenses, emergency travel expenses involving the health or death of an immediate family member and many others that can be found on the USM website by searching the Student Emergency Fund.
USM senior, Josephine Elder, is a member of the class of 2019 campaign planning committee. She said she hoped the campaign would be “replicated by every graduating class at USM for years to come.”
”Giving back to our fellow students by helping them pay for their studies at USM is so much better than the typical class gift of a bench, right?” Elder said. Elder added that the point of the student emergency fund is to prevent students from experiencing financial trouble.
The Student Emergency Fund provides resources for USM students who have experienced financial hardships from the recent government shutdown. The shutdown lasted over a month, from Dec. 22 of last year to Jan. 25, leaving many federal workers unpaid including homeland security, law enforcement and other governmental departments. This was the longest government shutdown in the history of the United States.
Gabby Lenotte is a freshman at USM and she was affected by the shutdown. When she prepared to purchase her textbooks for spring classes she realized how expensive they were. Lenotte’s father was working without pay, due to the shutdown and she didn’t want to strain her parent’s finances by paying for her books. So Lenotte reached out to a professor and was eventually granted money from the student emergency fund. Lenotte started her classes with her books on time.
Anyone interested in donating to help the Class of 2019 reach their goal of $2,019 can visit the USM Portland campus in March. March 3 through 6 from 11 am to 2 pm a table will be set up in Woodbury Campus Center. March 7 from 11 am to 3 pm there will be a table set up at the Job Fair in the Sullivan Gym. March 37 at 5 pm USM’s American Marketing Association will have a table in the University Events Room on the 7th Floor of Glickman Library.