Alcorn’s use of limelight should serve as a model

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 20, 2000

My what a little national exposure can do. The folks at Alcorn State University learned that lesson first hand recently to the tune of $270,000.

That staggering amount was donated to the university after the &uot;Tom Joyner Morning Show&uot; zeroed in on the Lorman campus in February. The show shared a little of its radio limelight with the university in order to raise awareness of the need for funds to help students with financial need.

For one month, the historically black college, which has a School of Nursing campus in Natchez, was mentioned daily before an audience of about 7 million listeners.

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Alcorn president Dr. Clinton Bristow was astounded by the outpouring of support.

&uot;We got a lot of national publicity that would have cost us a million dollars,&uot; he said.

And the university wisely has chosen to take the money raised and put it in a special scholarship fund that will help benefit its students who are in &uot;dire&uot; need of financial support.

These student will not be required to be dean’s list students in order to receive the funds. The students simply need to show their financial need.

Hopefully, the new scholarship funds will help Alcorn attract students who may be teetering precariously on the edge of being able to afford a college education or not.

Perhaps the best part of the entire fundraiser was that it didn’t cost taxpayers one cent.

This is exactly the type of effort – with all parties rallying together for the common cause – that our community should look to for an example of raising funds.

Imagine what good our community could accomplish if we all worked together instead of working against one another.

Alcorn’s model serves as an example for all of us.