Donor Voices

Adam C. Colby '09, Director of Campus Safety and Security

Adam C. Colby '09Adam Colby presented these remarks at the General Staff Breakfast and Campaign Thank-You:

"Following my discharge from the military, my long-term plan was to go to college and receive a degree. However, I did not have a college in mind. My first employment after the military was as a bodyguard for a judge in North Carolina who was receiving death threats from the KKK. This judge just happened to be an Eckerd alumnus. I remember him telling me about how great Eckerd College was and how much the faculty and staff cared about the success of their students. He believed Eckerd College was the perfect institution of higher learning for me, so much so that he paid for a flight so I could see the College for myself. Of course this included an interview with Admission. Let's just say the Admission staff did their job.

"I would say that I had a successful Eckerd College career; if you want to know more about it, Dean Annarelli will be more than happy to fill you in. My success cannot be completely credited to my professors. While they did provide me with thoughtful stimulation and direction, it was the librarian who helped fill the pages of my thesis through research; my work-study position in the Campus Safety Office that kept my fridge well stocked with Red Bull; the ITS department that kept my computer working and the abundant information of the Internet flowing; Financial Aid that kept me enrolled; and the Business Office that understood the complexity of the GI Bill. In essence, every staff member here played a vital role.

"Andrew Carnegie wrote an essay in 1889 titled 'Wealth.' In it Mr. Carnegie states that the best way to administer great wealth is through charity while living. I believe that almost everyone here donates in some fashion. However, Mr. Carnegie believes that 'one of the serious obstacles to the improvement of our race is indiscriminate charity.' Ten dollars to a homeless individual or a charity that operates abroad might make us feel good but will not always benefit our society as a whole.

"Mr. Carnegie believed that when donating, 'the best means of benefiting the community is to place within its reach the ladders upon which the aspiring can arise,' and that our 'main consideration should be to help those who help themselves.' Look around us; we are surrounded by some of the brightest, most gifted students in America. While we do not know every student on campus, we all get to know a few and track their progress as their intellectual breadth grows. I know that most of us become partial to our work-study scholars. As the economy continues to slump and the government begins to cut back on spending, some of these students may not have the chance to continue within the Eckerd College environment.

"While I cannot give, nor probably will ever be able to give, the amount that Mr. Carnegie gave, I try to do my part for the improvement of our nation and community by giving what I can to Eckerd College through payroll deduction. For we might never know when a small but simple gift can change an individual's life, like it did mine."