In 2008, the alumni of the St. Pius X Catholic High School class of 1968 were celebrating their 40th reunion. A group of alumni came together at that time and decided to create an endowment fund for the school that would support teacher enrichment.

There was an important need at the school for their beloved faculty members. Due to a change in archdiocesan policy, all teachers were required to be certified. In the past, Catholic schools had more flexibility in hiring prospective teachers.

The alumni class set a goal of raising $50,000 for the fund, and were able to meet that goal five years later by their 45th reunion thanks to the generous gifts of their classmates.

Bill deGolian, one of the fund founders, said this fund benefits not just the teachers, but their class as well. “It gives classmates a focus to gather regularly, rather than once every five years, and provides opportunities for alumni to take a more active interest in the school, the faculty, and in their fellow classmates.”

Since 2014, the amount the fund can distribute is steadily growing, and more and more teachers are benefitting from it and reaching their educational goals.

In 2018, there are nine educators at the school working toward the completion of degrees or certifications, including Masters and doctoral degrees.

Dean of Students Rachel Braham `86 is working on her doctoral degree and knows the impact this fund is having on her personally. “Such an undertaking is a massive commitment emotionally, professionally, personally, and certainly financially.  I am doing this degree because I believe it will make me a better professional educator and a better person.  I believe this degree will help me make St. Pius X a better educational institution, and therefore help students be better prepared for their futures.” Rachel noted that without the support of St. Pius X both personally and financially, she would not be able to accomplish her goal.

“I sincerely appreciate that alums and other benefactors give financial help to us so that we can continue that service,” she said.

The fund also helps fund professional development opportunities. In 2017, head librarian Robin Tanis was able to attend two conferences on online books and publications which is so critical in this digital age.

This dedicated alumni class is not stopping here. As they celebrate their 50th reunion in October 2018, the goal is for the fund to reach $100,000 to continue impacting St. Pius X teachers – and in turn their students – long into the future.