By Jake Weber, photos by Dave Lawrence
Along with its 177th birthday, Albion College celebrated Tuition Free Day on March 23. Students and other well-wishers crowded the Kellogg Center Living Room for pizza, cake and a little information on how far their tuition support really goes.
Tuition Free Day comes at the 80% mark in the academic year, and notes the fact that student tuition covers only 80% of the College's annual expenses. Donors to the College cover the remaining 20%.
"Think of what Albion would be like without Greek Week, Day of Woden, the Big Show and graduation," said Student Alumni Association President Krysta Schroeder, '13, noting that all of those events happen after Tuition Free Day. "Donors ensure that we have these amazing experiences."
Lizzy Thornton, '09, noted that young alumni can find opportunities for supporting their alma mater even on a graduate school budget. "If you go to a coffee shop just once a week, you could spend $200 a year on coffee," she said, noting she had spent far more than that her first year in graduate school. "When I think about $25 that I might give to Albion, it really drove it home for me … it makes a difference."
Brian Lefler, parent of first-year student Landon Lefler and a member of Albion's Parent Leadership Council, noted that he wanted every student on campus to have the ability to study what really inspired them. "The only way to do that is to give," he said.
President Donna Randall acknowledged the many donors in attendance and urged students to thank them. "Tuition Free Day is very important because it indicates when these people start paying for your education," she told the students. "I hope when you see one, you can thank them."