Surprise Gift Helps Offset College Student Expenses

SEATTLE, WASH. – On the second day of school, he walked into the bookstore without enough money to buy the calculator he needed for one of his classes at Highline College.

Minutes later he walked out, calculator in hand, thanks to a surprise bookstore gift card.

TWEET THIS: Students at Highline College were surprised with gift cards from Inspirus Credit Union to help them purchase college textbooks.

The shocked shopper was among 75 Highline College students who cashed in a total of $2,500 in gift cards – part of a “Welcome back to school” surprise – courtesy of Inspirus Credit Union. The credit union set up a booth outside the college’s bookstore and, as students filed in, invited them to draw for bookstore gift cards valued at $25 or $50 each.

“The look on their faces said it all,” said Inspirus Vice President of Marketing Sherry Lotze. “When you’re juggling work, school, and family on a tight budget, a little boost can make a huge difference.”

Highline College in Des Moines ranks among the most diverse colleges in the United States, with 56% of its students identifying as Asian, Latino, or African American. The student body is evenly split between learners pursuing transfer degrees to four-year institutions and those completing technical or other programs.

On average, college students spend $1,200 a year on textbooks.

In addition to gift cards, students received other giveaways when they stopped by the Inspirus booth.

About Inspirus Credit Union
Founded in 1936 by a Seattle math and journalism teacher, Inspirus serves about 80,000 members across Washington who share a passion for education. With $1.1 billion in assets, Inspirus operates branches in Seattle, Spokane, and Lynnwood. Its philanthropy model includes education-giveback programs that allow members to direct charitable contributions to schools in their communities. Inspirus employees donate upwards of 1,000 volunteer hours each year in support of education. In addition, Community Education Representatives provide free financial seminars, professional development, and recognition to school employees statewide. For more information, visit inspirusCU.org.

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