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Press Release

Barbara Laskin

Bonner Foundation Awards Macalester $500K for
Civic Engagement and College Access Program

Award will generate another $500K in matching gifts for $1M Endowment

June 16, 2010 – St. Paul, Minn. – Macalester College will receive a $500,000 endowment gift from the Corella and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation to support the college's participation in the Bonner Scholars Program, a nationwide, four-year program in student civic engagement. Macalester will raise an additional $500,000 in matching gifts to create a $1M endowment for the program. 

“This generous gift from the Corella and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation will give Macalester students an opportunity to further their passion for social justice and service to the community while continuing their studies at Macalester,” said Macalester President Brian Rosenberg. 

Since 2006, Macalester has been one of 80 U.S. colleges and universities that participate in the Bonner Scholars Program.  The mission of “Access to Education and Opportunity to Serve” reflects the participation of first generation college students in the Bonner program.  In 2010-11 Macalester will designate 50 Bonner Scholars.  The endowment will allow this number to grow.  

“The Bonner Foundation recognizes Macalester‘s distinguished legacy of service to the world,” said Bonner Foundation president Wayne Meisel.  “This gift, however, reflects the college’s powerful promise for the future.  We look forward to Macalester renewing its legacy through innovation, finding creative ways to extend and sustain civic engagement in local communities and throughout the world.”  

The Bonner Foundation, based in Princeton, N.J., seeks to transform the lives of students by extending the reach and impact of current civic engagement on their campuses.  Students in the Bonner Program commit to intensive and ongoing service, marked by rising levels of civic leadership and responsibility. Earlier this month, the Bonner Scholars Program celebrated its 20th year. 

Karin Trail-Johnson, director of civic engagement and associate dean of the Institute for Global Citizenship, said the program benefits Macalester, its students and the community. “The Bonner Scholars Program embodies Macalester’s mission of service to society and the cultivation of global citizens.  As our Bonner Scholars engage deeply in Twin Cities communities, they gain insights into the application of their academic work and their own abilities to make a positive contribution in their communities near and far.”

Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 1,958 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism and civic engagement.