This is the power of planning
As an associate director of development at UCCS, Corrie West already knows how powerful philanthropy can be. But her own life experiences have inspired West personally: she has made a planned gift to support UCCS.
Corrie decided that after her passing, gifts from her retirement accounts will benefit three universities, one being UCCS. At UCCS, her gift will support three areas: the Karen Possehl Women's Endowment, a new women's athletics scholarship, and a new fund supporting the caregiver program at the Aging Center.
"I feel strongly about the experiences I have had in my life. Looking back, without these opportunities, my life would have been very different," she said. "It really is a heart connection to these causes."
Corrie is the caregiver for her father who lives in Wisconsin. Six years ago, he was given a fatal cancer diagnosis but, she says, "through good fortune and persistence," he now lives independently but still requires medical care as he enters his twilight years. The Aging Center's caregiver program is a resource for families like her facing challenging times when a loved one is ailing or aging.
"I'm only 45, so my friends have asked me why I'm thinking about my estate. But I don't want my loved ones to go through what I have with my dad—being the one responsible for such big decisions and trying to navigate the waters with zero information. My intentions are spelled out, and I've made these decisions when life is calm. I worked really hard to be able to give something back, and I would hate for it to not go where it can make a difference."
West's determination to complete her future estate plans now comes from the focus and discipline she learned early in life. Being a student athlete—she was an all-conference center back midfielder and captain of her soccer team at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh—gave Corrie a community and a purpose outside of academics. She wants to be sure that female student athletes at UCCS get the same opportunity.
The Karen Possehl Women's Endowment (KPWE) has special meaning for Corrie as well. It supports non-traditional women who have experienced challenges in their lives but have an enduring desire to fulfill their educational dreams. "There was a time in my [college] life that I wasn't in the best relationship, but I had people believe in me and support me," West said of her support for KPWE. "Before I was even hired at UCCS, I knew I wanted to be involved in it."
Planned gifts ensure that donors like Corrie continue to make a difference in the world now and in the future. Corrie says she feels confident that the causes she cares about—student athletes, empowering women, and caregiver resources—will receive financial support and continue to help those who need it.