How Employee Giving Makes a Giant Difference in Student Lives
Karla Zubiate, left, and Alena Crandell.

How Employee Giving Makes a Giant Difference in Student Lives

CNM’s Leading the Way Giving Campaign Kicks Off Oct. 5
October 01, 2020

For CNM student Karla Zubiate, a CNM Foundation scholarship made all the difference last semester.

“The scholarship helped me catch up with bills and relieved a lot of stress so that I was able to concentrate on the classes I had,” Karla says. “I really want to say thank you to the Foundation and I really, really appreciate you guys!”

The scholarship Karla received is just one of many the Foundation hands out each year to help students succeed at CNM. The scholarships are funded in various ways, but one of the most important is through employee giving during the Leading the Way Campaign.

That campaign, which is run through a partnership with the United Way of Central New Mexico (UWCNM), kicks off Oct. 5 and it’s a chance for CNM employees to decide how much money they’d like to contribute toward student scholarships, or another CNM Foundation Program Fund, and/or any recognized charity of their choice.

“Leading the Way is really important for students and employees because it’s a great way to fulfill the CNM vision of changing lives and building community,” says Monica Hussey, the Director of Development at the CNM Foundation.

Leading the Way has been around for more than two decades and each year more than 500 CNM employees choose to participate. Most employees give through a simple payroll deduction that starts coming out at the beginning of the next calendar year. Even $1 per pay period makes a difference, and all donations are tax deductible. Employees can also make a one-time contribution. 

If employees want to give more broadly, their donation can be given to the United Way of Central New Mexico, which works with thousands of non-profits around the world. The United Way can also help employees channel their donation to a specific non-profit of their choice. 

The student success stories are many, but one more comes from Alena Crandell. Alena—who graduates this term and plans to transfer to a four-year school—had never received any funding and instead paid everything out of pocket. Then she was awarded a Foundation scholarship and says that changed everything.

“Receiving a scholarship gave me a lot more faith that I can apply for other scholarships down the road,” she says. “I won this one and I know that I can keep going onto bigger things. As a minority and Native American, we need all the help we can get so thank you very much CNM.”

After Leading the Way kicks off on Oct. 5., presentations are scheduled at departmental meetings. There will also be several open sessions where members of the CNM Foundation and the United Way of Central New Mexico will be available to answer your questions. The first open sessions will be on Oct. 6 and Oct. 7 from 12-1 p.m., and Oct. 8 from 5–5:30 p.m. You can join one of these Zoom sessions using this link.