LUKE VISCONTI’S STORY
LUKE VISCONTI, RUTGERS ALUMNI, FOUNDER AND CEO OF DIVERSITY INC.
It is rare to be able to be part of a program that provides such immediate and personal gratification. I had the opportunity to be part of the first class of Rutgers Future Scholars and saw the students I met as eight graders graduate from Rutgers University this year.
Donating to the program allowed me a window into their lives, to see them grow up and through the mentoring and preparation the program provides, graduate high school and then college. These scholars graduate Rutgers fully prepared to enter the workforce, something that is not very likely for first generation students coming from their economic background.
With your financial help, and as much involvement as you care to give, you can also be a part of this almost miraculous process. You will see the triumphs (and sometimes the tragedies) that these intrepid young people experience. Pioneers in their families – first generation college students – Rutgers Future Scholars intelligently and firmly provides them with the mentoring and preparation that middle-class and wealthy families routinely
provide their children, but most low-income families do not have the knowledge, experience or funds to access and succeed in college.
To be sure, the workload is on the students – they must perform at a Rutgers standard to be admitted and to earn their degree. And they do at an incredible success rate – you will see them transform from tentative children, awestruck by their first visit to a university, into self-confident, well prepared adults.
Donating to Rutgers Future Scholars is a fulfilling, beautiful way to “give back” – to the future of our society. Most of us who attended Rutgers have stories of hard work and sacrifice – this is a way for you to blaze a path for others to do the same. I strongly urge you to donate generously to Rutgers Future Scholars and, to the degree that your time permits, participate in the program.
I promise you an extremely rewarding experience.
Your generous contribution truly makes a difference, as we transform lives, ignite dreams of college, and open up new worlds of possibilities.
STEVE COLSON’S STORY
STEVE COLSON, BUSINESSMAN, PHILANTHROPIST, AND LEAD FOUNDER OF CRESTHAVEN ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOL
Steve Colson is not the type of guy who can just write a big check to a charitable organization and walk away. He is the first to admit he does not know how to “partly get involved” when he latches on to a cause. And he has latched on to many.
That’s why over the years, this businessman and philanthropist has had 13 Somali refugees camping out in his three-bedroom home in Warren, N.J., for more than a month, as well as six Vietnamese family members who stayed even longer. It’s the reason why, over the years, he’s helped numerous families in need to pay for surgeries, college-tuition costs and airfare to see their ailing relatives.
“I hate to see somebody that has talent but doesn’t have opportunity,” says Colson. “It’s not fair. I want people to be rewarded for their work and efforts.
So, if you’re willing to work but you don’t have opportunities, I want to give you that opportunity.”
But beyond his monetary support, Colson has given Rutgers Future Scholars unstinting hours of his time. He has participated in every Rutgers Future Scholars event held, including workshops, campus tours, basketball games and career and financial-planning seminars.
“It goes back to fairness,” Colson says. “How can I feel good about being successful if these kids in New Brunswick or Plainfield, right down the road, aren’t getting a good education? It takes away from the joy of my success because it doesn’t seem fair.”
In 2010, Colson was selected as a recipient of the Rutgers University Human Dignity Award, which recognizes individuals who have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to the practice of diversity and social justice.
HOW TO SUPPORT RUTGERS FUTURE SCHOLARS
Associate Vice President for Development
Rutgers University Foundation
TRANSFORMING LIVES — YOUR GIFTS AT WORK
“The Rutgers Future Scholars program has not only provided me with great opportunities to ensure a successful future, but it has also redefined who I am as an individual. This program has significantly changed the way I view myself and shaped me into the kind of student who strives for success.”
“Experience prepares you for the future; it opens your eyes just a little, so you can see what’s in store. The Rutgers Future Scholars program opened my eyes to the possibilities as a college student. I just had to open the door.”
THANK YOU TO OUR CORPORATE PARTNERS
We’d also like to thank National Grid, New Jersey Resources, Community Foundation of New Jersey Victoria Foundation, MBIA Foundation, Susquehanna Bank, and State Farm Companies Foundation for their support.