A Legacy of Learning
Contact: John Wilson, director of development for Baylor University Libraries, (254) 710-3457
"One of the great joys of being at a university is having the opportunity to go to the library and read works you weren't assigned to read," said Tom Rusk Vickery (BA '57), a retired professor of educational policy. "The more important works we have at the library -- for when students are just out seeking knowledge -- the better education we can provide them."
With this enthusiastic spirit, Vickery encouraged his fellow members of the class of '57 to establish the first library endowment at Baylor University. Like most of his classmates, Vickery made his donation by signing over his university security deposit -- which was in the neighborhood of $25 -- to the senior class gift. In the end, the endowment came to about $4,000, a significant gift for the time.
With the endowment's interest income, the Baylor University Libraries have been able to purchase valuable items such as a four-volume facsimile of the Gutenberg Bible, Collected Writings of Herman Melville, Encyclopedia of World Art, volumes 1-16, and much more. Holdings such as these enhance the stature of the Baylor University Libraries and allow in-depth research that might not be possible otherwise.
Now, as the class celebrates its 50th reunion, Vickery hopes to revitalize their efforts and increase the endowment. He has pledged $1,000 per year and challenges the other members of the class to do the same.
"The class of '57 was a very special class, with vision and character, and I would like to see their original legacy grow, so it can reach even more students and touch more lives," said John Wilson, director of development for the libraries. "This class may have even more of an impact on the future than it had in the past. When they give to this endowment, they give to every student and every faculty member at Baylor."
For information about contributing to the Class of '57 library endowment, please contact John Wilson at (254) 710-3457.