When a parent loses a job

dan rentie

K-State Proud helped keep Dan Rentie in school when his mom lost her job.

Dan Rentie’s time at Kansas State University had just begun when he was faced with the possibility of having to leave. His mother had lost her job and was no longer able to help Dan and his sister with college expenses. “I didn’t know where to turn for money, and I thought I was going to have to drop out,” Dan said. Thanks to a Student Opportunity Award from K-State Proud, Dan was able to stay at K-State.

Dan, a freshman in architectural engineering from Frisco, Texas, says K-State is a good fit. “Specifically for my major, K-State is really good. My sister goes here, and it’s close to family in Kansas City,” he explained. “The first time I came to visit, everyone was very nice, and Manhattan seemed homey.”

Before applying for the Student Opportunity Award, Dan didn’t know much about K-State Proud. Someone had mentioned it to him, but he didn’t think he’d ever have to use it. But once he realized he needed help to stay at K-State, Dan found out exactly what K-State Proud does. Guided by the Student Foundation, the K-State Proud campaign is all about students helping students. Money raised through the campaign goes to Student Opportunity Awards—awards given to students with financial need. In the first six years of the campaign, K-State Proud has raised more than $550,000 and given out more than 300 awards.

Students who receive the awards want donors to know they will make the most of the gift and they plan to pay it forward. “I plan to make the most of my award by working as hard as I can on my education,” Dan said. “Knowing that there are people here for me and I’m not in this process alone—that encourages me and gives me motivation. It helps me to strive to become the best I can be because I don’t want to waste their money.”

If Dan could speak to K-State proud donors, he’d tell them, “I want people to feel encouraged that their money is actually helping people, helping students stay in college and get their education. It makes a huge difference!”

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