NEWS

Mount fund aids students during personal emergencies

October 08, 2019
NEWBRUGH, N.Y. -

Dr. Jason N. Adsit, president of Mount Saint Mary College, volunteered to take the hot seat in a dunk tank during the college’s Alumni Weekend, to raise money for the new Student Emergency Fund. Seen here, Dr. Adsit is dropped into the water thanks to a good throw by a colleague.

Dr. Jason N. Adsit, president of Mount Saint Mary College, volunteered to take the hot seat in a dunk tank during the college’s Alumni Weekend, to raise money for the new Student Emergency Fund. Seen here, Dr. Adsit  is dropped into the water thanks to a good throw by an alumnus. 

With the support of dozens of Mount grads attending the college’s recent Alumni Weekend, Mount Saint Mary College proudly announced the creation of the Student Emergency Fund, which will provide financial support to currently enrolled students who find themselves in unforeseen crisis situations.

The fund will be available to students who are unable to meet essential expenses due to temporary or unexpected emergencies, including purchasing essential medications and other medical care; financial needs arising from an emergency, accident, or other critical incidents; getting winter clothing; providing emergency child care; and more. Funds of up to $500 will awarded as a stipend and do not need to be repaid by the student. Applications will be available beginning in the Spring 2020 semester.

Donations to the fund got off to a fast, fun start on Saturday, October 5. Patrons of the college’s Alumni Weekend donated to the cause in exchange for a chance to soak several Mount faculty and administrators in a dunk tank, including Evan Merkhofer, assistant professor of Biology; Arthur Glass, vice president for Finance and Administration; and Dr. Jason N. Adsit, college president.

The dunk tank had raised $800 in just two hours, which Dr. Adsit pledged to match, for a total of $1,600.

The Student Emergency Fund began as a joint venture between the Office of Advancement and the Mount’s Student Support Center, started by Nikki Khurana-Baugh, Vice President for Advancement, and Orin Strauchler, assistant dean of Student Support Services and director of Counseling. However, support for the initiative quickly went campus-wide. Many at the Mount, including Fr. Greg Fluet, campus chaplain and director of Campus Ministry, have already pledged to the fund.

“Students have struggles sometimes, and there’s a lot we can to do help them with services on campus,” said Strauchler. “But sometimes students come to us with an emergency like a fire or a death in the family, and they don’t have the funds to do what they need to do. What we’re hoping to accomplish is giving them a little bit of help to get them over the hump. We want all of our students to be successful in their personal lives and to know that we support them.”

Khurana-Baugh noted that the Student Emergency Fund is rooted in the Dominican Heritage of the Mount, particularly the Dominican Pillars of service and community.

“Giving back is so important,” she said. “Emergency situations can dramatically impact a student’s ability for academic success. We are hoping to ensure that our students have all the opportunities and options to stay on track.”

The number of students who can benefit from the Student Emergency Fund is limited only by availability. It’s easy to donate to the initiative: please visit msmc.edu/LoveMSMC