ST. GEORGE — Higher education impacts and enhances quality of life. Such is the proposition of the American Association of University Women and the St. George branch’s featured presenter, Bonnie Jean Beesley, who plans to inspire guests at the association’s October scholarship gala.
The dinner dance, “A Night of Inspiration,” is hosted by the St. George branch of the American Association of University Women and will be held at the DiFiore Center for Arts and Education at 307 N. Main St. in St. George, Oct. 24. The public is invited to this fundraising gala. Tickets are $75 and can be obtained online now. Seating is limited.
The scholarship gala will offer “a night of inspiration and celebration for those who give and work to build a stronger community through education,” Donna Howell, president of the St. George AAUW branch, said. The gala promises to be festive, complete with dining, jazz, dancing and presentations.
“We’re encouraging everyone to come dressed for a party,” Howell said. “The West Coast Jazz players will provide music to dance to, and there’ll be silent and live auctions as well.”
Bonnie Jean Beesley, a woman who has dedicated a good portion of her public life and private giving to helping Utah residents and others around the world gain a post-secondary education degree or certificate, will share the inspiration she gained from dedicating energy and resources to others.
Beesley completed two six-year terms on the Utah State Board of Regents this past May having served since 2003. She was vice chair for six years prior to accepting the gavel in 2012 and was chair until 2014. The Utah State Board of Regents is appointed by the governor and chartered to manage, control and supervise Utah’s higher education system.
“Increasingly our quality of life as individuals and families and as a community is impacted by our level of educational attainment,” Beesley said.
She worked with the Board of Regents in support of the “Big Goal” of “66 percent by 2020” — which aims to raise the level of educational attainment such that 66 percent of the working age population in Utah would have a meaningful certificate or degree by the year 2020.
Also speaking at the gala will be Richard “Biff” Williams, president of DSU where much of the St. George AAUW branch’s scholarship monies are invested in young women entering or returning to college after interrupting their education to raise a family or for other reasons.
Recent AAUW scholarship recipient LauraLyn VanWagoner will comment on what the award has done for her.
The American Association of University Women is the nation’s leading voice promoting equity and education for women and girls. Since its inception in 1881, AAUW members have researched and taken positions on the fundamental issues of the day: educational, social, economic and political.
The AAUW St. George Utah Branch is an extension of the National AAUW. Founded in 1981 their mission is to help advance equity for women and girls in Utah through advocacy, philanthropy and education. AAUW St. George Branch is a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Organization.
- What: AAUW Scholarship Gala “A Night of Inspiration”
- When: Saturday, October 24, 6-10 p.m.
- Speakers Bonnie Jean Beesley, former chair of the Utah Board of Regents | Lauralyn VanWagoner, 2015 AAUW scholarship recipient | Dr. Richard “Biff” Williams, president Dixie State University
- Where: DiFiore Center, 307 N. Main St., St. George
- Cost: $75 per person. Seating limited. Tickets available online only: aauw-stgeorge.org/gala
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