Why I Give: How MICDS Has Shaped the Youngs’ Annual Commitments

Whitney Walker Young ’01 and Jarrett Young ’01

An MICDS “lifer,” Whitney Walker Young ’01 enjoyed a childhood that revolved around MICDS. For Jarrett Young ’01, his MICDS journey began in 7th grade and with an instant love for Codasco football. Little did the two know that MICDS would eventually become the catalyst for a life of happiness. In fact, they’ve been together since Junior Prom in 2000. Now in their 12th year of marriage, Whitney said she still laughs at his jokes. It’s a classic MICDS love story—and not just because they met at MICDS, but also because of their lifelong commitment to the School through annual giving.

The Youngs started giving to the MICDS Annual Fund in 2006, the year they were married, shortly after graduating from Bowdoin. Eleven years later and with two children, Henry and Effie, they’ve continued to make giving a habit, now through a monthly recurring gift program.

Effie, Whitney, Jarrett and Henry Young

Why is philanthropy important  to you?

J: I was from North St. Louis and rode the Bi-State Bus for a period of time to get to and from school. I wouldn’t have been able to attend MICDS had it not been for the generosity of others giving to the School.

W: I hope to lessen the struggle for others who are less fortunate than me. I give in hope that others like me will give and that those who I help will give once they are financially able.

What influences your decision to give every year?

 J: There always existed in the community at MICDS a willingness to give when you see a need. I have felt the power of giving, which inspires me to give back.

W: My husband’s story inspires me to give. He would never have attended MICDS had it not been for the financial assistance provided by the School. I saw his life change. I want to provide opportunities to others and give back as a ‘thank you’ to MICDS for changing his life.

Why is  giving back to MICDS important to you?

J: I met my wife here. I’ve stayed in touch with my former teachers, and I wouldn’t be who I am without the education I received. I value the openness of the community and the relationships formed here. All of this brought meaning into my life.

W: MICDS provided me the ability to discover my strengths and passions and grow up with confidence. I want to provide others with that same opportunity.

Why is the Annual Fund the best option for your family?

J: Participation matters and it all adds up. When a school is trying to raise funds for larger initiatives, alumni and parent participation shows commitment and value. Doing something small so that the institution can do something big is a no brainer.

W: When I was right out of college and even now, the Annual Fund allows me to continue to give in a way that is financially manageable for us and our family.