Campus Life

Seniors: Vote for the 2017 Class Gift

Ballot includes three proposals to help fellow Penn State students

The 2017 Class Gift Campaign Executive Committee includes, from left, Kamal Dhiman, director of logistics; Cassie Calia, director of events; Nikky Samuel, director of student outreach; Arielle Scott, director of fundraising; Steven Parr, director of communications; and Sis-Obed Torres, executive director. Credit: Laura Waldhier / Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — This week, Penn State seniors have the chance to vote for their class gift and leave a legacy to their alma mater. Voting for the 2017 Class Gift begins Monday, Oct. 17, and runs through Friday, Oct. 21.

Seniors can vote in-person at the HUB-Robeson Center from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day, or vote at online. Voting and giving information are available both online and at the voting tables.

Students graduating in May, August or December 2017 are eligible to vote for the 2017 Class Gift. Seniors who, at the same time, make a gift to the Class Gift Campaign will have their vote counted twice.

The three proposals on the ballot are:

  • Supply food for students who need it.

College is an exciting time, but attaining a degree also can be exceptionally challenging both mentally and financially. Lion Pantry, the student food bank, helps in-need and at-risk students by providing free food to any student with a Penn State ID.

Because Lion Pantry is currently funded by donations alone, it is difficult for the program to meet the growing need for its services. By creating a permanent, annual source of funding to support Lion Pantry, the class of 2017 can help ensure that while their fellow students might need to worry about getting good grades, they will never need to worry about getting a good meal.

  • Provide books; promote success.

Penn State strives to offer the highest quality education to as many students as possible. This means providing access not only to engaging classes, but also to the ever-important textbooks which help students excel in those classes.

The Library Textbook Fund reduces the cost of a Penn State education by allowing students to borrow books reserved for their classes rather than buying or renting them, which can be a significant expense.  At its current capacity, the fund can only provide 10 percent of the need for this service. By supporting the Library Textbook Fund, the class of 2017 can increase the number of textbooks and electronic course reserves available and help students succeed.

  • Support happier, healthier student transportation.

Penn State University Park sees thousands of students, faculty, staff and visitors move through and around its campus every day. Such a large and vibrant community deserves an equally sufficient and dynamic form of transportation.

To address this need, the class of 2017 has the opportunity to fund the creation of a Bike Share program. In collaboration with the office of Transportation Services, these funds would provide the financial base needed to launch the program into its pilot year. In addition, these funds would reduce student membership costs, providing a healthy, environmentally friendly and affordable transportation alternative.

The Class Gift Committee will reveal the gift selected by the class of 2017 on Wednesday, Oct. 26. The event will take place from noon to 3 p.m. on the ground floor of the HUB.

"There will be free food, a DJ and guest speakers to help announce the gift that 2017 has selected as theirs," said Cassie Calia, director of events. “We wanted to create an event for the gift announcement that was interactive and fun for everyone. We want the class of 2017 to get excited about what legacy they will leave behind."

Steven Parr, director of communications, said, “This is an exciting time of year for seniors as they’ll get to learn how our class will give back to Penn State. It will be a great time to learn more about the Class Gift campaign and how to 'Start Your Legacy.’"

The students of the 2017 Class Gift Committee Executive Committee are: Sis-Obed Torres, executive director; Steven Parr, director of communications; Arielle Scott, director of fundraising; Cassie Calia , director of events; Kamal Dhiman, director of logistics; and Nikky Samuel, director of student outreach.

Follow class gift information on Facebook or @PSUClassGift on Twitter and Instagram. For more information on Penn State class gifts, visit Questions can be directed to Steven Parr, 2017 Class Gift communications director, at

Last Updated October 14, 2016