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Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Willey Planned Gift to Create Performing Arts Scholarship

Stephanie Willey (right)SALISBURY, MD---Salisbury University alumna Stephanie Willey ’82 believes in the idea of “always going to your joy.”  For her, it’s music and singing.

The Salisbury resident plans to help future SU students follow their passion for vocal and musical performance, as well as theatre and dance, by creating the Stephanie T. Willey Performing Arts Scholarship. A planned gift, the scholarship will be funded via an IRA that Willey has designated to SU upon her passing.

“Planned gifts allow individuals to have a meaningful impact on future generations of students without limiting their level of comfortable living in their later years,” said T. Greg Prince, vice president of university advancement and external affairs and executive director of the SU Foundation, Inc. “Our Holloway Society, of which Ms. Willey is now a part, recognizes those who have committed to planned gifts of $25,000 or more.”

“What I wanted to do was leave a legacy,” said Willey, a local sales manager for Comcast Spotlight. “I believe that higher education is very important and the arts face issues with funding nationwide; I thought I could make the biggest difference for students who want to pursue a degree in the performing arts.”

Willey started singing when she was nine years old.  She was a business management major at SU and studied voice in college with SU instructor Norma Hyde.  She performs locally with the Salisbury Chamber Singers and Trinity United Methodist Church’s Sanctuary Choir, and enjoys attending cultural events at SU, and Community Players and Broadway shows.

In addition to being an annual supporter of the Salisbury Symphony Orchestra and the Bobbi Biron Theatre Program via the President’s Club, Willey also remains involved with SU’s Franklin P. Perdue School of Business. She also is a member of The Women’s Circle at SU.

The Willey scholarship, eventually, will be awarded to students with a 3.0 G.P.A. or higher with preference given to students from single parent households and those with financial need.

“To me, it is important to leave something in perpetuity,” Willey said.  “While I don’t have the financial means to create this scholarship now, a planned gift allows me to know that when I pass on, my family will be taken care of and this is going to happen.  I don’t have to worry about it.”

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“There are many ways to create a planned gift, from leaving specific amounts, percentages or remainders of estates, to gifting homes or other property, to selecting SU as the beneficiary of life insurance or retirement funds,” said Jason E. Curtin ’98, assistant vice president for development and alumni relations and deputy director of the SU Foundation. “We also can set up other charitable gift arrangements including annuities and trusts.  We are grateful to those who think of SU when considering their lifelong financial planning.”

The Holloway Society was created in memory of SU Founding President William J. Holloway to honor those who help support SU through planned gifts with its Foundation.  For more information about such opportunities, contact Curtin at 410-543-6176 or jecurtin@salisbury.edu.   

Pictured, from left, are Stefanie Gordy of SU’s Advancement and External Affairs Division; Dr. Maarten Pereboom, dean of the Fulton School of Liberal Arts; and Willey.


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