1st Source backs Niles New Tech with big donation

Published 8:26pm Monday, August 20, 2012

The 1st Source Foundation recently provided a financial boost to Niles New Tech Entrepreneurial Academy, donating $35,000 to the Niles Community Schools program.

Supt. Richard Weigel said the money would go toward network fees, which includes professional development, mentoring and software.

During Monday’s school board meeting, Board President Jeff Curry read a portion of a letter submitted by 1st Source Foundation stating, “1st Source is a strong supporter of New Tech, and we are pleased to partner with you to ensure the success of your program. We are glad things are going well and students are excelling.”

Curry said the 1st Source Foundation gift surprised him and asked Weigel if it came at the last minute.

“It did come kind of out of the blue … it wasn’t something like we were calling them,” Weigel said, “but they told us how supportive they were of the work, and they were very impressed with what we are working to do.”

Weigel said people from the 1st Source Foundation attended two tours of Niles New Tech last year and came away “impressed with what we were doing.”

Weigel added he includes 1st Source Foundation in his updates of district news.

“They also got some regular information from us,” he said.

Board member Michael Waldron said the gift is good news but asked Weigel how the district stands in terms of foundation support.

Weigel said he is a “little behind” right now in foundation support, but the district remains in “good shape.”

“I’ve talked to several other foundations, and they are ready to continue to support us. I just need to do some follow up,” he said.

Weigel said additional donations would be coming over the next couple of months.

The school board approved the $35,000 gift, which is necessary with gifts of more than $2,000.

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