"If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader."
-John Quincy Adams
Make Dreams Come True
True Former Teacher Gives Back Through Scholarship Support
"My first day of teaching was a little overwhelming, knowing that I was responsible for teaching all the subjects," says Mary Kaiser Smith '49. Mary had just graduated from college where a different teacher taught every subject. That was 67 years ago. Today, Mary helps future teachers prepare for their first day in the classroom through her gift of scholarship support.
Mary has seen the cost of education spiral since she graduated, and she doesn't think acquiring student loans is a long-term solution.
"So many students take on so much debt while in school that it becomes difficult for them to repay. By not having a lot of debt after graduation, students are better set for success," Mary says.
The Mary Kaiser Smith Elementary Education Endowed Scholarship is awarded to juniors. Scholarship recipients often send her letters of gratitude telling her how much they needed financial help. She says it is satisfying to know she is making a difference for UNI students. In the future, the plans Mary has in place for UNI through her estate will add to her scholarship.
Now that Mary is retired after 38 years of teaching, she continues to make a difference in her community through volunteer work. On Saturdays she is busy helping at the Des Moines Botanical Gardens and Monday evenings she serves meals at the American Legion to help raise money for soldiers. She is also active in her neighborhood association.
The information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For such advice, please consult an attorney or tax advisor. Figures cited in examples are for hypothetical purposes only and are subject to change. References to estate and income taxes include federal taxes only. State income/estate taxes or state law may impact your results. Annuities are subject to regulation by the State of California. Payments under such agreements, however, are not protected or otherwise guaranteed by any government agency or the California Life and Health Insurance Guarantee Association. A charitable gift annuity is not regulated by the Oklahoma Insurance Department and is not protected by a guaranty association affiliated with the Oklahoma Insurance Department. Charitable gift annuities are not regulated by and are not under the jurisdiction of the South Dakota Division of Insurance.