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Couple Give Time, Energy and More to McDaniel

Current and Future Students Benefit From Their Gifts

Betty and George Thomas '59

Betty and George Thomas '59 give back to McDaniel College in recognition of the scholarships and support George received as a student.

Retirement and a move to Carroll Lutheran Village just a few miles from the Hill have launched George Thomas '59 and his wife, Betty, on a rewarding second career providing service to the community, including mentoring McDaniel students in the gerontology program.

"We think students studying this subject should meet some seniors," says George, pointing out that perceptions of seniors are often out of step with reality.

In 2011, George and Betty also established a charitable gift annuity at the College as a way to give back to the alumni who afforded George his scholarship-and in appreciation of faculty guidance. With a charitable gift annuity, the Thomases receive fixed payments for both of their lives, a significant portion of which is tax-free.

According to George, it's a win-win situation. Their annuity was easy to establish with McDaniel College, which provided everything they needed to make an informed decision about their gift. George and Betty also know that funds from their annuity are helping future students.

"Having made our decisions while we still have the required willpower, energy and mental capacity helped us to make a very wise investment that is already paying the best of dividends," writes George in one of his published articles about retirement. Those dividends refer to their new experiences and active lifestyle in a "carefree home where we enjoy peace of heart," he says.

Debt of Gratitute

"My mother was a schoolteacher in Carroll County, and I had a scholarship to go to Western Maryland. I also worked in the dining hall for 55 cents an hour (plus meals) and made $27 a month from ROTC. That got me through," George says, adding that he still feels a debt of gratitude for the scholarship and chance to study at the liberal arts college.

A biology major, George says he started out as a less-than-stellar student, but the excellent teaching and mentoring by Drs. Sturdivant, Royer and Kerschner got him on track. Their lessons jump-started his academic energies, and George completed a Ph.D. in biochemistry at the University of Maryland. His clinical research resulted in co-authorship on more than 135 clinical and research publications, and his path-breaking research provided physicians with vital diagnostic clues to explore and unlock the causes of developmental disabilities in the young. He also served on numerous state and national boards including those that address developmental disabilities and inherited childhood diseases.

Firsthand Experience With Seniors

With Zumba classes, daily hiking in the Village, current events lectures and excursions to the Hudson River Valley and beyond, McDaniel students will see firsthand that the vibrancy of aging residents like George and Betty is similar to their own living-learning experience at McDaniel.

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Ways To Give picture of our Alumni
Going the Distance

"Whether training for the triathlon or aiming for college, it takes hard work and dedication to hit the mark. But sometimes, hard work just isn’t enough. Generous scholarships gave us the boost we needed for college, and now we are paying it forward through annual donations and a planned gift to keep the momentum going for students today and tomorrow."

Find out more by emailing Lawrence "Chip" Junkin, M'15 or calling him at (410) 857-2256.


McDaniel College • Office of Major and Planned Gifts
2 College Hill Westminster, Maryland 21157 • 410-857-2250

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to McDaniel College a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to McDaniel College, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Westminster, MD, or its successor thereto, ______________ [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to The College or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to The College as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to The College as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and The College where you agree to make a gift to The College and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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