The future of St. Bernard Prep depends on Prep Alums

How will you answer the challenge?

Alums: know that the future of your school literally depends on you. At the moment, the majority of our donation income is coming from graduates of our college, which closed back in 1979. Very few of St. Bernard Prep graduates are contributing to our funding.

The situation isn’t dire yet, but the budget will become a serious issue if the current trend continues. That’s why we’re calling on Prep Alums to Stand in the Gap.

Catholic schools are in a tough spot

The decline of Catholic schools over the past few decades has not attracted much media attention. As a result, most people are simply unaware of the many challenges that we and many other Catholic schools are currently facing.

Trends that unfolded over the past several decades have taken their toll on Catholic schools nationwide. The statistics speak for themselves. There are now 5,938 Catholic schools in the United States, compared with more than 11,000 in 1970. We’re blessed to be counted among the Catholic schools that have managed to survive all these turbulent changes.

We couldn’t have made it as far as we have without our alumni

Compared to other schools in our niche, we are fortunate to be as financially stable as we currently are. On the other hand, times are changing.  The demographic profile of our current donor database necessitates a shift in focus.

Our college alumni have held down the fort for a long time, but the college closed down back in 1979. Now it is time for Prep alumni to stand in the gap.

Our expenses here at St. Bernard are manifold. Our highly trained teachers and staff are absolutely essential to what we do. Without them, we would not be able to run St. Bernard Prep at all. But to keep them, we must continue to keep their salaries competitive. Then there are facility expenses, which include insurance, utilities and other similar costs. Financial aid is another big ticket budget item. We do everything we can to make the tuition fees more affordable for everyone, so that we can have a student body that’s as diverse as possible.

The high cost of running an diverse and affordable Catholic preparatory school requires us to depend on the generosity of our former students. We really can’t continue our mission without your contributions. That’s why we’re calling on Prep Alumni to join our community of financial supporters.

A valuable networking opportunity

The Prep Alumni Society is about more than simply raising money for St. Bernard Prep. It’s also about building relationships.

By joining, you’ll be able to preserve and strengthen the special bonds of friendship that you forged while going to school here.

The demands that come with going to college and entering into adult careers are many. It’s all too easy to lose track of your prep school classmates– especially if you are separated by long distances. As members of the Abbot’s Society, you’ll be able to stay connected with these friends as you go off to college and enter into adult careers. Those of you who have graduated years ago can use this opportunity to rekindle and strengthen any valuable friendships that may have faded over time by participating in regular get-togethers.

You may even make some new friends, too. New connections can open up not only new friendships, but also new career possibilities. All St. Bernard grads are worth getting to know. After leaving here, many go on to become pillars of their communities, leaders and executives at multinational companies.

Charity: a Christian joy

Jesus commands us to love both God and our neighbors. In other words, we are to not only worship God properly but also take care of each others’ needs as well.

God knows that self-giving love isn’t always easy for us. So to lighten our load, Jesus sent us a helper: the Holy Spirit.

Christians who follow Jesus’s commands and cooperate with the Holy Spirit are able to build up infused supernatural virtue in their souls. Scripture reveals that anyone who walks in the Spirit is able to enjoy His 12 fruits: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

So if you want to grow closer to God, making some kind of financial sacrifice is a wonderful way to start. Every dollar counts and the intention behind the gift matters more than the amount.

Other benefits of supporting us

Yet another reason to support us is the fact that you can write off your St. Bernard donations at tax time. The IRS allows you to deduct up to 60% of your adjusted gross income. Donating can result in tremendous tax savings, especially if your contribution drops you into a lower tax bracket. 

All gifts made to St. Bernard are tax-deductible because St. Bernard Preparatory School is recognized as a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization.