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Couple Makes Dreams of College a Reality


Jack and Claire Cruse with BSU President Jo Ann Gora

It took planning and determination for the dream of attending Ball State to become a reality for Jack Cruse (BS '58), who worked a year after high school to save enough to enroll and then accelerated his college career to cut costs.

"Financially it was a challenge for me to go to Ball State," said Jack. "I doubled up my academic load so I could graduate in three years instead of four."

Jack had a full plate, but not too full for the social studies major to socialize a bit. He soon met Claire Shadley, who was on campus for orientation. After dating for 10 months they became man and wife.

After graduation, the couple moved to San Diego where Jack taught junior high. Four years later he switched career paths and began working at General Telephone and Electronics (now Verizon). They also started their family with two girls born 14 months apart.

Jack's promotions took the family to New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, and back to Southern California, where he was the director of education & training for the GTE West area prior to retiring in 1991. They moved back to Indiana where Jack was appointed to an agency head position by then Governor Evan Bayh. He later formed his own company, Cruse Enterprises, Inc.

Looking back, they see their Ball State experience as a significant highlight of their lives. A time for planning and determination came again when they decided to make a bequest to Ball State to fund scholarships for Miller College of Business students. This gift coincides with the Ball State BOLD Campaign, which seeks to create 200 new scholarships.

"We have been fortunate to be financially able to establish this scholarship to help people who otherwise might not be able to go to school," said Claire. The Cruses encourage others to let their head and heart lead them to where their planned gift should be made.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Ball State University Foundation a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to Ball State University Foundation, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 2800 W. Bethel Avenue, Muncie, IN 47304, or its successor thereto, ______________* [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to the foundation or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the foundation as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the foundation as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and the foundation where you agree to make a gift to the foundation and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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