What is the impact of a raindrop?

At a recent Sylvan Circle gathering, a society for individuals who have included South Dakota State University in their estate planning, Dean Dennis Papini and I shared the design and timeline for the Performing Arts Center expansion.

Rina Reynolds Development director, College of Arts and Sciences

Rina Reynolds
Development director,
College of Arts and Sciences

It drew great interest. People took the opportunity to “walk through the building” by viewing the floor plans and images of the 850-seat proscenium theater, recital hall and dance studio. The expansion consists of nearly 100,000-square feet dedicated to classrooms, rehearsal and teaching spaces and faculty teaching studios. It is projected to begin in March 2017 and open by fall 2018.

Many commented that it was time to get the expansion done. Others were curious about the price.

Mansour Karim, a 1955 civil engineering graduate now living in Pierre, approached and said, “A project like this one is very important for all of the students and the whole campus, not just the students in music, theater and dance.

“I want to do something to help with this,” he continued. “It may not be a lot, but it will be what I can do.” When we thanked him for his willingness to help, he responded, “It is many raindrops which make the ocean … I can be a raindrop; and others should be raindrops, too!”

Every week, alumni and friends are actively engaged in improving the education of students in the College of Arts and Sciences. Some return to speak to classes and others support scholarships to help reduce the financial load on students. Others simply want to do something to give the faculty and departments a little flexibility in the use of their financial contributions.

No two raindrops look the same. And, as anyone with a connection to the land in South Dakota knows, without raindrops, nothing grows.

As you think back to your experience at State, you may be reminded of faculty who made a difference for you, a scholarship that lifted some of your financial burden, or a mischievous or special memory that makes you smile. Whatever your reminiscing brings, consider being one of the raindrops that can help impact the students at SDSU.

Will you help with the Performing Arts Center expansion, a scholarship or experiential learning opportunities? Or do your interests lie in helping to build an endowment for the department from which you received your degree? Have you included SDSU in your estate planning? Have you told us how you would like that ultimate gift used?

Passion. Discovery. Opportunity. These are the words that guide the leadership within your College of Arts and Sciences. It is my privilege to assist you in matching your interests with opportunities in the college.

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