Ed Spuler ’96 was back on campus recently for a chance to see firsthand the impact that his financial support of UNH scholarships has for current students.
Spuler was one of more than 60 benefactors who gathered with students last week for the annual Great Works luncheon, where those who fund endowed scholarships and those who receive those funds meet face to face.
For Spuler, it was more than just a meet-and-greet.
"You can really see the students' excitement and appreciation for the gifts they have received — more specifically, earned. This tactile experience cannot be realized through an email thread. And because of this, I was left thinking, 'How can I do more?'" he said. "I walked away energized and excited about the prospect of doing more for these deserving students."
The event included a video highlighting Paige Balcom '16 of Londonderry showing what scholarship support makes possible for UNH students. Balcom has travelled to Uganda to establish a clean drinking water system, has studied abroad in Wales and represented UNH at an engineering conference in China. She's also heavily involved with student groups on campus, including Engineers Without Borders and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.
Siddharth Nigam '16 was the featured guest speaker at the luncheon and shared his story of coming from a low-income family in India to study at UNH.
"As a first-year student, I avoided going on big trips and such with friends because I was always worried if I could make it to the next semester. I could not afford books my second semester here and my GPA took a hit," Nigam said.
Want to Know More?
To find out more about scholarships and other financial aid available to UNH students, visit our financial aid page. Interested in making an impact by giving to scholarships at UNH? Visit our giving page for more information.
But receiving scholarships changed all that. Thanks to donor support, he's been able to be an active member of the UNH community. He serves as president of the Indian Subcontinent Students' Association and the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers, and he is the first international student hired by Residential Life as an assistant hall director.
He said scholarships mean he doesn't have to fret about affording school; instead, he can focus on the regular things students should be thinking about, such as homework, classes and the organizations he is part of.
"Your support has given me the ability to call UNH home and follow my passions," he told the crowd.