Students First, Students Now provides essential support for Ohio State students

May 13, 2011

The Students First, Students Now initative has surpassed its initial $100 million goal, and its momentum continues.

In 2008, while many universities across the country were experiencing a downturn in fund-raising due to the recession, The Ohio State University was aggressively working to get ahead of the issue, aiming to raise $100 million over two years in support of student funding through the Students First, Students Now initiative.

Created by Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee, Students First, Students Now is a university-wide initiative designed to ensure continued access to education for Ohio State students. Thanks to the generosity of Ohio State friends and supporters, Students First, Students Now surpassed its initial $100 million goal, and its momentum continues.

Although economic recovery is beginning, many families are still experiencing financial constraints, making paying for tuition difficult.

From 2008 to 2011, the number of students enrolled on the Columbus campus receiving Pell Grants increased 38%, and Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) filers increased 22%.

“The Students First, Students Now initiative increased private scholarship donations by nearly 20%,” said Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee. “That is a remarkable number, but we must do more. Our land-grant mission calls for us to be the keystone to the American Dream for talented young people, regardless of their families’ financial circumstances.”

As enrollment and need increase, private support will provide a critical measure of resources for student funding. The university must consistently generate new sources of funding to maintain existing student support and scholarships.