For more than 50 years, the green and white jerseys of Baylor University's Student Foundation have popped up to guide prospective students through campus, to ride bicycles in Homecoming parades and to direct participants at Bearathon.
However, their most important role in the Baylor community? Serving as fundraisers for student scholarships.
This year, as Student Foundation marked their half-centenary, they also celebrated an even greater milestone: $5 million raised for scholarship endowment.
"Student Foundation's student leaders have created an incredible legacy over the last 50 years of service and support for the students of Baylor University," said Jordan Hannah, the Troy and Betty Mays Director of Student Foundation. "We celebrate this memorable milestone in our organization's history, the meeting of our $5 million goal in support of scholarships for our students is truly a cause for celebration. We are grateful for our Student Foundation members who have worked tirelessly toward this goal, and for our alumni, parents and friends who continue to give back to Baylor through scholarships."
When it was created in 1969, Student Foundation's mission was simple: to foster support for student scholarships among the Baylor family. As members of this selective group, students are not only exposed to philanthropy and its impact on the Baylor community – they are participating in the full cycle of giving. Students experience the process of asking alumni, parents and friends for gifts in support of scholarships; they witness first-hand the generosity of That Good Old Baylor Line.
Collectively, Student Foundation members have helped to create or initiate 90 endowed scholarships through Student Foundation, providing scholarship support to its members and deserving students within the Baylor student population. What is unique about Student Foundation is the selection and administration of those scholarship funds – which is handled by the very same students.
This year's fundraising milestone points to the impact that Student Foundation has on its members: two former officers established scholarships to help meet the goal.
John and Nikki Buxton Bell of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and William E. (Ed) and Denise Crenshaw of Lakeland, Florida established endowed scholarships supporting Student Foundation in 2020. Nikki Buxton Bell (BBA '98) served on the Steering Committee as a Baylor senior, and Ed Crenshaw (BBA '73) served as president of Student Foundation during his time as a student.
The two scholarships support Give Light: The Campaign for Baylor, which undergirds Illuminate and will impact every aspect of campus life – academics, athletics, student life and service learning – while also bolstering financial support for students and for the priorities of Baylor's 12 schools and colleges.
The Nikki Buxton Bell Endowed Student Foundation Scholarship Fund will provide support for students based on merit and need, as determined by the Student Foundation Scholarship Committee, as well as Baylor's Department of Financial Aid. The William E. Crenshaw Endowed Scholarship Fund in Student Foundation was established through a portion of a leadership gift that will also create two new endowed faculty chairs within the School of Business. The Crenshaw Scholarship will support Student Foundation members enrolled in the Hankamer School of Business.