Western University Be Extraordinary The Campaign For Western

Learning then, giving now

September 14, 2014

bill sayers
Parent, alumnus, volunteer and donor Bill Sayers, BA’79: “We all need to give time, talent and money. In my case, it’s to Western.”

When Bill Sayers, BA’79, attended Western, he remembers hearing about the ATM – a new technology that could dispense cash and make deposits by using a bank card. Now, bank machines are ubiquitous, perhaps outdated as consumers can bank online or with smart phones. Yes, times have changed.

For Bill, times have also changed when it comes to a university education. In the past year, he has been helping his twin daughters decide where they want to attend school, which has given him the chance to reflect on his Western experience.

As a student, Bill studied political science and lived in residence at Westminster College. He worked on campus and took out student loans to pay for university.

“My father was a United Church minister and my family didn’t have a lot of money in those days. However, with some assistance from my parents, student loans, summer jobs and working at The Spoke, I made my way through,” he says, adding that a university education seemed more affordable in his day.

Today, students need more support, he adds. “Getting into university is one thing, but making sure students have what they need to finish their education is another.”

That’s one reason Bill is a donor to The Western Fund, giving every month to support current students in their future goals.

“I learned many lessons about giving and being involved in the community during my childhood,” he says. “Many families are struggling to send their children to university, and I believe it’s important to help more young people achieve an education.”

His giving is more than financial. Bill has participated in on-campus speaking events, talking to students about how Western prepared him for his career in corporate sales. “I had a ball talking to them and saying, ‘this was my experience and here is what happens after Western’,” he says.

“I believe it’s important to give time, talent and money – and I want to give all three to Western. It’s been a special place for me, right from the first time I walked on campus until now… it really allowed me to get where I am today. That’s priceless.”

This article appeared in the 2014 edition of Annual Impact
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