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Swansons kick start university fund drive
Matt and Maria Swanson have gifted California State University, Stanislaus $250,000 for an endowment for One Purpose. - photo by Photo Contributed

Turlock residents Matt and Maria Swanson have pledged $250,000 to California State University, Stanislaus to serve as the foundation for the One Purpose endowment.


The university envisions One Purpose as an annual fund drive that aims to raise $1 million for scholarships for high-achieving students during a six-week period in the fall.


“The goal of One Purpose is to keep our region’s best and brightest students right here in the Central Valley so that they can become our next generation of community and business leaders,” said CSU Stanislaus President Joseph F. Sheley. “Matt and Maria Swanson have been friends of the university for many years, and this generous gift represents their very significant investment in the future of our students and our region.”


The One Purpose fund drive, which begins Aug. 28 and ends Oct. 9, will organize more than 300 volunteers from the campus and community into 24 fundraising teams collectively striving to reach the $1 million goal. The Swanson gift is independent of the fund drive, but is intended to be the seed that emboldens the new campaign and motivates the community to participate. Earnings from the endowment in future years will supplement the funds raised by volunteers.


“With this gift, the Swansons have planted a seed for the future growth of One Purpose while also serving to inspire our volunteers as they embark on the inaugural year of the campaign,” said Shirley Pok, CSU Stanislaus’ Vice President for University Advancement. “The direct impact of this investment is undeniable, but the wind it puts in the sails of everyone involved with One Purpose is just as critical to our mission of supporting student success.”


Matt Swanson was president of the CSU Stanislaus Foundation from 2008 to 2012, and he and Maria have made numerous gifts supporting CSU Stanislaus athletics and sponsoring events that help create connections between the campus and the community. And as owners of a number of local companies, they have seen firsthand the impact CSU Stanislaus graduates can have on the region.


“Running a business in today’s climate requires talent and training and an ability to adapt to technology,” Matt Swanson said. “Our family of companies have several CSU Stanislaus graduates in senior leadership roles. The university is the clear leader in the development and preparation of the Central Valley’s future workforce.”