Couple Makes Dreams of College a Reality
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.