MARSHALL (KYTX) - The East Texas Baptist University graduating class of 2013 has given back to its alma mater a gift that will be seen by many in the years to come. The gift is an archway located at the main entrance to the campus. The archway spells out East Texas Baptist University in Tiger gold and is trimmed in navy blue with the seals of the University displayed.
"I wanted my class to give something back because I wanted us to have pride in our alma mater when we come back to visit," said Brad Mashburn, who served as Student Government Association president for the 2012-2013 academic year and graduated this past May.
Traditionally, a senior class starts its fundraising effort their freshmen year. The 2013 senior class had to have a plan to raise funds during a short time of four months. The class gift tradition has not been carried out on the Hill in many years.
Mashburn visited with ETBU President Dr. Dub Oliver and a plan was developed. "Dr. Dub presented me with the idea of asking the seniors with $100 housing deposits to donate that for the Class of 2013 gift," said Mashburn, who was recently hired by ETBU as a Development Associate.
"I asked three other classmates, Cynthia Morales, Lauren Finch, and Zach Mullins, to help me in the effort. We hosted two events to explain to the seniors how they could help out," Mashburn shared. "The seniors who did not attend, I personally contacted. I learned quickly that donations would not happen if I did not ask."
The total cost of the gift was $9,000. "Deposits came from 70 students and two outside donations helped us reach our project goal," Mashburn remarked happily.
"I am so proud of the Class of 2013 and their wonderful class gift!," remarked President Oliver. "To see our newest alumni giving back in this way is a testament to their love for ETBU. The archway is a beautiful entry point for everyone as they come to the hill."
The new archway was installed on Friday, August 2, and was fabricated by TX Gates of Marshall. The last archway to mark the entrance leading up to Marshall Hall said East Texas Baptist College. The archway came down when ETBC became ETBU in 1984 and was never replaced until now.
"TX Gates worked hard to get us a quality product that would represent the University well and they definitely delivered," commented Mashburn. "It was exciting to finally see the hard work come to fruition. I hope this gift will inspire the future senior classes to give back to ETBU upon their graduation."
A dedication ceremony for the new ETBU archway will be held during Homecoming activities, October 18-20.