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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

Retired faculty continue their legacies - Gift annuities established by former professors to help future students

Media Contact: Dave Lavallee, 401-874-5862

KINGSTON, R.I. -- May 12, 2004 -- They are the gifts that keep on giving. Professors Emeriti Lorraine Bloomquist and William Metz have each established charitable gift annuities that will eventually support student scholarship endowments in their names.

Lorraine Bloomquist, a retired physical education and exercise science professor and URI alumna (bachelor of science 1966, master of science 1968) has established two gift annuities that will benefit an endowment in her name. An expert in physical activity for persons with disabilities, Bloomquist worked at URI full time from 1967 through 1994, and now continues to work on a limited basis, teaching a graduate course on Sports for the Disabled and URI 101 for freshmen. In 2003, she edited five chapters and wrote three chapters in a medical book on exercise for those with disabilities. The Charlestown resident also published a book on adapted aquatics.

Her endowment is designed to provide financial aid to non-traditional female students in the University's Feinstein College of Continuing Education. By "non-traditional," Bloomquist means women who did not go to college straight from high school. She was married with children before she pursued her college career. "It is important to educate all our women," said Bloomquist. "Everyone needs education, and URI is the best school for encouraging older students."

Besides writing and teaching, Bloomquist spends her retirement volunteering as a "caregiver" with St. Andrew Church in Charlestown. A portion of the annuities will also benefit St. Andrew's. She raises funds for the church and helps hospitalized and needy patrons. In addition she travels and spends time with her five grandchildren ages 22, 15, 14, 13, and 12.

William Metz, the former chair of the History Department and history professor from 1945 through 1982 established an annuity that will support an existing scholarship in his and his late wife’s name. The award will go to senior history majors and graduate students in history.

"I wanted to make a contribution to the university," the Kingston resident said about his new annuity.

Since his retirement, Metz spends his time involved with community organizations like the South County Museum and the Town Hall Restoration Organization. He also published a book on the history of the Kingston Congregational Church. He also enjoys visits with his family and four great grandchildren.

"Lorraine and Bill are two great examples of how faculty can recognize URI through their estate planning," said Wade Wilks, director of the Office of Planned Giving. "It is very easy to set up an annuity. Individually, we sit down with the donors and outline the gift arrangement and its benefits."

Funded with cash or marketable securities, a gift annuity is a simple contract between the donor and the University of Rhode Island Foundation that guarantees the donor a fixed annual income for life as well as an immediate partial income tax deduction. The payment amounts are determined by age of the donor at the time of the gift; the older one is, the higher the amount. Payments may begin immediately or be deferred based on financial circumstances.

For more information about gift annuities you may contact the URI Office of Planned Giving at 401-874-2296.