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Trustee Pledges $500,000, Inspires Giving Challenge


Sustaining the Mission at the Mount

A few short weeks ago, the world was put on pause.

Restaurants shuttered their doors, local businesses closed until further notice, education—from Pre-K to Ph.D. programs—went completely virtual, and individuals from China to Connecticut have adapted to a new way of living through social distancing, lockdowns, and self-quarantine.

COVID-19 has changed everyday life. The effects of the pandemic have been felt across the globe, as families continue to lose loved ones and the economy comes to a screeching halt.

And while efforts have been placed on the safeguarding of our community members, it is clear that the impacts of this pandemic will be wide-ranging and long-lasting—especially for independent institutions like the College of Mount Saint Vincent.

Recognizing the scale of the financial threats to our mission, trustee Cristóbal Conde and his wife, Kamaryn, have stepped forward with extraordinary generosity. They have pledged $500,000 to this year’s Annual Fund. $500,000 to sustain the Mount’s mission of being an exceptional institution that provides high-quality education and extraordinary opportunities to prepare students for careers and for lives of leadership and service—an institution where all dreams are welcome.

Cristobal Conde and his wife.

But that’s not all. The Condes are challenging the entire Mount community to match their support.

Every unrestricted dollar given by an alumna/us, a friend, a trustee, a corporation, or a foundation before June 30, 2020—at a level of giving higher than that donor has given in past years—will count toward the challenge. This is something we call “new giving.”

To meet this ambitious challenge, the Condes and President Charles L. Flynn, Jr. are urging all alumnae/i and friends to make gifts to the College greater than those they have made in past years.

“The Condes have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to the mission of Mount Saint Vincent,” explained Dr. Flynn. “They have been consistent leaders in annual giving, and their generosity now—during these discomforting days—underscores their faith in our students and confidence in the integrity with which the College serves them.”

Dr. Charles L. Flynn, Jr. talks at Commencement.

Significant suffering and uncertainty lie ahead. The College has already made some hard choices and will need to make more toward bridging the gap. But, through it all, the Mount community has responded to these difficult times with commitment, intelligence, and compassion—something Dr. Flynn is deeply proud of.

Mount students are exemplary. They, and their professors, have responded with great flexibility and patience to the challenges of this semester. Classes continue through online learning modalities, clubs and teams host digital engagements and events, and friends, classmates, and even prospective students stay connected through social media—demonstrating admirable resilience as a community of learners and leaders during this time of uncertainty.

Nearly 100 alumnae/i and friends have already stepped forward, pledging over $155,000 in new or increased gifts over the past few weeks. We’re proud of the commitment already shown by the Mount community—and the Condes’ hope their generosity continues to inspire other alumnae/i and friends to show not only their support of the College, but their belief in its mission and the students it serves.

“I believe deeply in the mission to make a liberal arts education accessible to students who have to surmount great obstacles to attend a first-rate college,” said Cristóbal. “I also believe deeply in that student—one of the first generation in their families to attend college. With a first-rate college education, I believe you can actually change society.”

We’re proud of our students and faculty. We’re proud of this College. It represents the best in this country and the best of the American Dream. Join us in supporting the College of Mount Saint Vincent.

Girls wearing Commencement outfits cheer in the graduation tent.

To participate in the giving challenge, make your gift to the 2019-2920 Annual Fund before June 30, 2020.

Accept the challenge today!

About the College of Mount Saint Vincent
Founded in 1847 by the Sisters of Charity, the College of Mount Saint Vincent offers nationally recognized liberal arts education and a select array of professional fields of study on a landmark campus overlooking the Hudson River. Committed to the education of the whole person, and enriched by the unparalleled cultural, educational, and career opportunities of New York City, the College equips students with the knowledge, skills, and experiences necessary for lives of professional accomplishment, service, and leadership in the 21st century.