Marin Education Fund Announces New Goal For Opportunity Fund Campaign

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: MARIN EDUCATION FUND BOARD OF DIRECTORS ANNOUNCES NEW GOAL FOR “OPPORTUNITY FUND” CAMPAIGN

100% of Donations Will Support Need-Based Scholarships

SAN RAFAEL, CA (December 3, 2005) – On the heels of a report that found that for every dollar California invests in educating more college students, the state will receive three dollars in net return, Marin Education Fund set a new goal for the “Opportunity Fund” to provide need-based scholarships for Marin County students.

The study, released yesterday by the Campaign for College Opportunity and conducted by UC Berkeley Researchers Henry Brady, Michael Hout and Jon Stiles, includes a detailed analysis of the costs and benefits to California taxpayers of increasing the number of students attending college and completing a degree. The report states, “For every dollar California spends keeping its college promise, the state gets a net return of three dollars on that investment.”

In response, the members of Marin Education Fund’s Board of Directors have increased their annual fund goal and pledged to raise $400,000 for the Opportunity Fund this year from Marin County residents and businesses, which will enable 160 students to get to college.

“Marin County is a place that values education and has the resources to invest in the future of California and its neediest students. That is why we are calling this appeal the ‘Opportunity Fund,’ because it represents this community’s desire to provide equal opportunities for everyone and ensure California’s future,” said William Smith, Marin Education Fund Board Chair.

Marin Education Fund estimates that there are over 1900 students in Marin County with the potential to succeed in college but who lack the funds to get there. Currently, Marin Education Fund is able to help only 600 of those students each year.

“One of the greatest gifts you can give is the gift of education. This holiday season, we are asking the people of Marin to help people in their community by donating to the ‘Opportunity Fund,’” said Smith.

Marin Education Fund’s appeal comes in the wake of recent funding shortfalls and rising tuition costs.

“Marin’s neediest students are asking for your help to achieve their potential,” said Smith. “A gift of just $100 can make the difference for someone with demonstrated commitment to attain his or her college dreams. We hope everyone will make such a gift now.”

About Marin Education Fund
Marin Education Fund (www.marineducationfund.org) is a non-profit organization that believes everyone should have a chance at college. Marin Education Fund provides college access programs, scholarships and support to students in need of all ages. The low-income and traditionally underrepresented students who receive support from Marin Education Fund are frequently in the first generation of their family to go to college. Marin Education Fund is affiliated with and receives major funding from the Marin Community Foundation. Marin Education Fund was founded in 1981.

Contact: Traci Lanier
Marin Education Fund
Tel. 415.451.4005
tlanier@marineducationfund.org

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