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The Impact of Giving: Today’s Students Are Tomorrow’s Donors


Sydney Adair

Great leaders are not necessarily born with the skills to guide others to excellence, but acquire them through hard work, tenacity, innovation and creativity. Boise State students today are learning skills and leading in and outside of the classroom. They are engaged in athletics, clubs, internships, community service and other experiences that develop teamwork, communication and critical thinking skills, enhancing their ability to adapt quickly to the collaborative environment of their chosen professions. We see these amazing students daily.

The Boise State Student IMPACT Board is an opportunity for students to learn and lead. This student-led organization, entering its third year on campus, focuses on developing leadership, celebrating the university’s history and traditions, and fostering school pride, all in the context of learning about and promoting philanthropy. IMPACT stands for involvement, motivation, philanthropy, advancement, community and tradition, values of the group that reminds its members why they are involved and what they are promoting to the campus community.

Student engagement with the IMPACT board often leads to employment opportunities and more. It’s common for students from the board to work at the Advancement Call Center or to hold other positions within University Advancement.

“I got involved in Advancement at Boise State through the IMPACT Board,” said Elise Braseth, ’21, global studies. “The organization exposed me to so many different parts of advancement that I ended up getting a job with the call center, and from there a job as a student employee working as a crowdfunding and Bronco Giving Day coordinator.”

The IMPACT Board is advised by Lauren Hamilton, associate director of student and recent graduate programs, and Connor Tudbury, director of annual giving.

“The IMPACT Board’s programs raise awareness of donors’ investments in today’s students, promote lifetime engagement and inspire future giving,” said Tudbury. “Students sometimes interact with donors and alumni while helping at an event or the Scholarship Dinner gala. Donors also really enjoy meeting the student recipients of their gifts.”

Sydney Adair, a senior studying mechanical engineering, says as a student supervisor at the call center that working in advancement at Boise State has changed her overall perception of philanthropy.

“Having the opportunity to see where our funds go and how many scholarships we really do have at Boise State has only encouraged me to want to give back,” Adair said. “When I find myself in a place where I am financially stable enough to give, I will be able to meet the recipient of my donation.”

Braseth agrees.

“Working for University Advancement has definitely opened my eyes to the power donations have,” she said. “No matter what size donation you may be making, giving back really helps create and foster positive change. Philanthropy can look like so many different things, and it has been awesome seeing just how impactful giving back to your community can truly be.”

To learn more about ways you can support students at Boise State University, visit

By Andrew Gauss