Stop Feeding the Silver Spoons

Ad Aims to Boost Giving to College
SUNY CANTON EFFORT: Alumnus Makes Pitch for
Donations in Paper

Watertown Daily Times Staff Writer
Thursday, October 18, 2007

CANTON — Joel M. Canino knows how far the $3 million he has given to SUNY Canton can go.

So when he read a Wall Street Journal article in August that noted a trend in Ivy League graduates deciding to forgo donations to their rich alma maters in favor of smaller schools where their money makes more of a splash, he took out an advertisement.

The ad, which ran in the New York City newspaper Wednesday, says, "stop feeding the silver spoons," and asks people to make a donation to SUNY Canton instead of institutions such as Harvard University.


Mr. Canino, who is chairman of the college's centennial fund-raising campaign, appears alongside other longtime SUNY Canton donors Rachael Bagley and Ronald L. Woodcock.

"Here, when you make a donation, you make a direct effect and you can see it on a firsthand basis, rather than dumping into a billion-dollar pool," Mr. Canino said Wednesday. "It's not about building buildings; it's about helping people."

The Wall Street Journal article cited a Chronicle of Higher Education report that noted that the gap between rich and poor institutions is widening, and gifts to colleges with smaller endowments make a bigger impact.

"Donations to mega-rich universities do not directly improve the academic experience of their professors and students, or result in any qualitative improvement in student learning," Steve O. Michael wrote in a July Chronicle of Higher Education article.


In contrast, Mr. Canino recounted meeting the students whom his scholarship fund supports at SUNY Canton's annual scholarship luncheon last month.

"Because of you, my life goals have changed," freshman Jacob M. Neely told Mr. Canino in a speech. "Joel, you have truly given me a chance to prove myself and what I can accomplish. I know that I have a responsibility to do well and to give back what has been given me."

The college's public relations department helped Mr. Canino create an advertisement recalling his experience giving to SUNY Canton and encouraging others to do so.

"Joel really tremendously cares about the school. It's an aggressive inspiration and vision," said David M. Gerlach, the college's vice president of advancement. "We hope it gets somebody from somewhere else to give SUNY Canton a couple million dollars and really help students."

The three-column ad appeared on page B4-F. It will run once again. The cost of running the ads was $18,000, college officials said.


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SUNY Canton Alumni Association
34 Cornell Drive
Canton, NY 13617
Phone: 315-386-7127

Fax: 315-386-7995