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Potsdam Educational Opportunities Fund to celebrate its first anniversary

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POTSDAM - Less than a year into existence the Potsdam Educational Opportunities Fund is on the verge of raising it’s first $100,000 and collecting a match from an anonymous donor who challenged the organization with a matching grant.

Fund Chairman Devon Shipp said the grant provides them with a 2:1 match for donations to their endowment fund and a 1:1 match for donations to their annual fund. That challenge has a deadline of Dec. 31.

“We will meet that deadline,” he said, adding he’s expecting to see the fund hit $100,000 in the near future.

“I’m very confident that within a couple weeks we’ll be at the $100,000 mark to meet the deadline.”

While the annual fund is money available to the group to use now, Mr. Shipp said he’s also glad to see the endowment fund doing so well.

“We want to build the endowment fund and use the interest,” he said.

Last year, he said the fund gave $6,000 to the school to use for student enrichment activities.

“We will look to fund a similar number again this year,” Mr. Shipp said, adding teachers will be submitting grant proposals to request funding from the organization.

“We’re looking to seed ideas,” he said. “We want something to sprout from those ideas.”

Mr. Shipp said proposals are reviewed by a committee, which then makes recommendations on ideas to fund.

Mr. Shipp also invited board of education members to a first-year celebration event to be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 24 at SUNY Potsdam’s Thatcher Hall.

At the conclusion of the presentation, board of education member J. Patrick Turbett simply said, “Thank you.” which Mr. Shipp replied, “You’re welcome. It’s for the kids.”

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