New scholarship aims to support climate change activism at Greenfield Community College

GREENFIELD — A new scholarship for climate change activism is already at work supporting students at Greenfield Community College who have demonstrated dedication to the work of reducing global warming and addressing the compelling issues of climate change, according to Regina Curtis, GCC Executive Director of Resource Development and the GCC Foundation.

The scholarship was created by Dr. Allen J. Davis, former Executive Director of the GCC Foundation. Davis’ many years of service with the Foundation gave him a front row seat to seeing the impact that access to education has on students.

Davis holds a strong belief that global warming and climate changes around the world are the most important challenge facing all life on earth. As a consequence, he wanted to encourage and support students who dedicate their lives to protecting and saving the creatures with whom we share the planet.

To work as a climate activist is, he believes, to help prevent or reduce the cataclysmic meteorological changes that harm the planet by threatening endangered species and negatively impacting the lives of millions of the poorest and most vulnerable of our fellow citizens around the world.

Davis was motivated to do this work by the arrival of his 70th birthday in December. While working on the important matters this milestone brought to the forefront, such as updating his will, he decided to direct money to GCC through bequest as part of his planned giving strategy. This would eventually create a permanently endowed fund at the GCC Foundation that will generate sufficient income each year to award a scholarship to students. While discussing the type of scholarship this would be and who would be eligible to apply, he also elected to donate enough each year to award a scholarship to a GCC student, beginning now.

After making that decision last fall to create and directly fund an annual scholarship, until its eventual funding by bequest in his will, Davis then found himself doubling his donation this spring. While serving as a member of the scholarship review committee with faculty from GCC’s Environmental Studies program, he read the 18 applications submitted and was so impressed by the quality and commitment of those students that he decided to increase his gift so the College could offer two scholarships, rather than just one.

Davis wants to make an impact on changing student lives and preserving the planet now, while he is still living and can enjoy seeing how his direct contributions make a difference in the world, noting, “It is fun to plan for the distribution of my estate later and be generous today!”

If you would like information on how you can change lives at Greenfield Community College, contact Regina Curtis at 413-775-1426 or at curtisr@gcc.mass.edu

Author: Going Green

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