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Student Assistance Fund established at WCSU in honor of retiring President

Retiring Western Connecticut State University President James Schmotter was celebrated at an event Friday night in Danbury.  Mayor Mark Boughton and U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal issued proclamations in recognition of Schmotter's work.  Western also made a presentation.  The James W. Schmotter Student Assistance Fund is being created with proceeds from the event.


The fund is being developed as a resource for seniors on the cusp of graduating, who may not be able to do so because of unexpected costs. 


University spokesman Paul Steinmetz says students who run into some kind of financial trouble during the semester will be able to look to this fund to help them out.  He gave the example of if they need last minute money for books.  There is nothing like this currently at Western.  Schmotter specifically wanted to direct the money from Friday's event to this concept.


Steinmetz says a lot of students also work and there's not a lot of margin for error if something bad happens, like if their car breaks down, and they need financial help or they drop out of school.  That's something that Western is trying to address with this fund.


Schmotter joined Western from Western Michigan University, where he was dean of Haworth College of Business and professor of management. His teaching career started at Northwestern University and he first became an administrator at the State University of New York at Binghamton. He also served at Cornell University's Johnson Graduate School of Management and was dean of the College of Business and Economics at Lehigh University.

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