President ReBecca Koenig Roloff ’76 announced today a bequest from the estate of Jean McIlquham Stalcup ’72 has resulted in a leadership-level donation of over $1.3 million toward Our Students as part of LEAD & INFLUENCE: The Campaign for the Next Level of Excellence.
“At St. Catherine University, we appreciate the power of an education that students can claim and make their own, much like Jean did,” said Roloff. “Jean was a trailblazer in her career, and continues to inspire our students, and our St. Catherine community.”
Called the Jean McIlquham Stalcup ’72 Scholarship Fund, it will be used to provide scholarships to students in the College for Women with demonstrated financial need. This scholarship may be renewed annually to the same student as long as they remain in good standing.
Jean was introduced to St. Kate’s by way of a cousin who attended and invited her to visit. Once she crossed under the gates, she knew she had found the place for her to claim her education. She studied psychology, but knew that she wanted to go into business. Her department chair allowed her to design her own program — a form of self-directed learning that she considered a good example of the flexibility in which the founders, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, excelled at.
A visit with corporate recruiters on campus during Jean’s senior year introduced her to The St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Company, where she would launch her career in insurance marketing and underwriting a few years later. She continued to develop her skills, and eventually worked for Employers Reinsurance Corporation, where she became the only woman leading a division in the company. She credited her St. Kate’s experiences for helping build her confidence to lead.
One of St. Catherine University's campaign priorities is to expand need-based financial aid in order to attract, support, and graduate more of the best students regardless of their financial means — and ensure they can take full advantage of the rich array of experiences at St. Kate’s.
St. Catherine University is forever grateful to Jean McIlquham Stalcup ’72, for her vision to support access to this transformative education. Jean’s gift not only benefits the recipient of her scholarship, but their family, their career trajectory, and ultimately the community as a whole.