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The Milton Measure

Why Does Milton Even Need My Money?

by on Friday, April 29th, 2016

Hi. If you haven’t met me yet—fair warning—then you probably will soon. If you have, then you no doubt have the image burned in your mind of an overzealous senior girl smiling and nodding and trying to redirect your every comment towards that dollar I know you’re hiding in your wallet. Stooping to car-salesman-sleazy lows, I’ve bribed you with sunglasses, shamed you in front of your friends, and probably even offered to pay you to give me money. Right.

So you probably didn’t believe me when I told you I wasn’t keeping the money either. Your generous donation of “one dollar—and zero cents” dropped straight into the Milton Fund, your beloved school’s annual drive for small-time donations.

This week, though, the Milton Fund decided to go big or go home. Among other things, Thursday signaled the beginning of an Olympic-sized battle between Milton’s development office and the world. Thursday marked Giving Day. With $30,000 hanging in the balance, your crumpled dollar bill may just have meant the difference between a newly admitted freshman receiving enough financial aid to attend Milton, and that same student having to turn down a year full of barbecue lunches on the quad, classes with teachers like Mr. Fricke, and conversations with classmates who care—all because he didn’t have enough money. Your dollar may have sent your math teacher to a faculty development conference that convinced her to teach by writing on the board from now on; it may have bought the school computer you should be using write now to write that essay.

Yes. Your dollar—four quarters—did all that.

Of course, Milton has never been one to turn down over-achievers. Harriet Tubman could make anyone smile! But this year, development officers and their student recruits emphasized gift-giving participation above all else. This year, Milton parents, Jeff Barnes P’16, Bill Knowlton P’23, and Dottie Webber ’60 P’04, pledged a sum total of $30,000 to the Milton Fund on one condition: 500 other donations.

In typical fashion, Milton naturally asked its students to step up. Contrary to common belief, students’ tuitions don’t even cover the expenses of a full Milton school year. Add to the list funding for a new club, edifice innovation and rising faculty salaries, and suddenly $30,000 becomes responsible for several months’ rent at the Milton Bubble. When students donate to the Milton Fund, they bear the burden of responsibility that unwaveringly accompanies privilege. Yesterday, students contributed to a one-day total of nearly 600 donations, over $30,000 raised and the continuation of Milton as it exists now.

We will all graduate and leave Milton one day– some of us sooner than others. My own graduation looms only a month away. When I walk across the stage in June to receive my diploma, though, I won’t mind being remembered as the girl who begged you for your dollar. Your dollar gave me the six most amazing years of my life at Milton.

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Posted by on Apr 29 2016. Filed under More Opinion, Opinion, Recent Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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