On Wednesday, Oct. 25, representatives from Hope College and leaders from local businesses will engage in a long-standing tradition of visiting more than 250 area businesses in Holland and Zeeland seeking contributions to the Hope Fund for the college's 2006-07 Community Campaign.
The Hope Fund has been in existence for almost as long as Hope College itself. The Community Campaign on behalf of the Hope Fund began more than 30 years ago as a way to engage community leaders with Hope faculty and staff in building and maintaining relationships between the community and the college.
In addition to those receiving personal visits on campaign day, hundreds more businesses and friends of Hope College will receive letters encouraging a contribution.
"The Community Campaign encourages area businesses to be involved with the campus community," explained Mark DeWitt, Hope's director of corporate and foundation relations. "Hope College and the communities of Holland and Zeeland have always provided great value and benefits to one another and this campaign acknowledges our relationship. Hope is grateful for business and industry participation in this effort through financial and volunteer support."
Ann (Van Dorp) Query, a 1968 Hope graduate and president of the Zeeland Chamber of Commerce, is serving as chairperson this year. She noted that she valued her experience as a Hope student and is pleased to be heading the fund-raising effort as a friend of the college and a community leader.
"We are moving into an increasingly global environment today," she said. "It is more important than ever before to have young people with developed skills as critical thinkers and with a broad-based understanding of cultural values, history, philosophy and the arts; in addition to their main course of study. Hope prepares students for the challenges of careers, leadership and life."
Query has been in her position with the Zeeland Chamber since 1989. She previously taught in elementary and secondary education, directed an off-campus university program, and co-owned and operated a retail business. She has a master's degree in community leadership and values the opportunity to be involved with many organizations that create a better regional community.
Revenue from the Hope Fund provides discounted tuition for every student. It also underwrites health, counseling and career services; assists in bringing world-renowned artists, authors, musicians and lecturers to campus; and generates service opportunities for the college's students. Financial support of the Community Campaign and the Hope Fund makes available unrestricted dollars that not only keep the lights on and the snow plowed, but also enhances the academic mission of Hope College.