Alumni Legacy Spotlight: Valarie Bastek ’06

Spring Summer 2024 Issue

In 2020, Valarie Bastek ’06 established The Bastek Award Fund, which supports students who are entering their senior year and ensures that they can complete their time at Susquehanna without additional financial stress. Making this gift to the university had special meaning for Valarie, as she wished to honor her own experience at SU.

“Prior to the last semester of my senior year, my mom let me know that we likely could not afford for me to return due to financial hardship that we were experiencing,” says Mrs. Bastek. “When we spoke to the financial aid office, they generously offered me a scholarship from an endowment.

“I will never forget receiving that message or the generosity that Susquehanna was able to show me thanks to alumni donors,” she adds. “I am forever grateful that the funds were available to allow me to experience senior year with my class.”

Mrs. Bastek says that she has always wanted to find a way to acknowledge her appreciation for that assistance.

“The endowment seemed like the best way to do it, as I could tailor it specifically to others in the same situation. When I told my mom about establishing my own award fund to help current and future SU students, she burst into tears. It means a lot to both of us to be able to give back, considering how much Susquehanna did for me!”

As the Bastek Fund continues to grow, an annual gift provided by Mrs. Bastek makes an immediate impact on a student recipient. Once fully endowed, income generated from the endowment will award student recipients year after year. Mrs. Bastek has also planned a legacy gift to SU, which, when added to the original endowment, will provide even more support for deserving Susquehanna students in perpetuity.

“I never would have known that an option like this — one that allows me to make an immediate and future impact — existed without the support of Susquehanna’s Advancement Office,” Mrs. Bastek adds. “I encourage anyone interested in supporting students this way to start that conversation with them.”

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