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Meet the Woman Behind the Benedict College Million Dollar Alumni Fundraising Streak

Ada Brown Belton has led the Tigers to Raise Over $1Million for the Seventh Consecutive Year

Columbia, SCJuly 2, 2021, Thanks to the world’s most generous alumni, the Benedict College Tigers proved there is financial strength in numbers.  Amid the recovery from a worldwide pandemic, the BC Alumni broke their own record.  Leading the charge was Ada Brown Belton, Assistant Vice President for Alumni Relations and Advancement Services for Benedict College. Under Belton’s leadership, the Alumni Fund surpassed $1M for the first time in its history in 2015. The Tigers have reported record-breaking contributions for seven consecutive years, with an all-time high that exceeded the $1.5 million mark for the 2021 Alumni Fund Campaign.

“We are profoundly grateful to our dedicated alumni,” said Dr. Roslyn Clark Artis, President and CEO of Benedict College. “The funds the alumni raised will make a tremendous difference in the lives of our students. I am especially proud of Ms. Belton for her tenacity and drive. She consistently raises her own bar and encourages her fellow tigers to pay it forward. As we continue to celebrate Benedict’s 150th Anniversary, exceeding the $1.5M is particularly significant.  Our alumni are the absolute BESTofBC!”

The College has achieved significant growth in its alumni area during Belton’s tenure. Over the last 20 years, Belton has raised over $20,000,000 for the Alumni Fund and was a part of the team that secured over $30M in capital support.

“Benedict College has the BEST supporters and competent and capable leadership.  I have the joy of working with a core group of Benedict Alums from around the nation who believes as I do that the outcomes from giving back positively impact the lives of those we serve,” said, Belton. “We believe  our students will help to create better communities around the world.  This is our Benedict, and we claim complete ownership and responsibility for her.  If we do not lead the charge for support, who will?”

Benedict College has been recognized by the SC Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, becoming one of the first HBCU’s to be honored with an award of $20,000. In 2018, Benedict College Alumni were featured on the HBCU Digest Annual List of the 50 Most Intriguing and Influential People of the Year in the HBCU community for its record-breaking fundraising. 

In 2019, The Benedict College National Alumni Association took home the top award at the National Black College Hall of Fame Foundation. The organization is dedicated to preserving and highlighting the accomplishments of HBCUs. Benedict College was honored to be named National Alumni Association of the Year for their dedication and hard work.


About Benedict College

Founded in 1870 by a woman, Bathsheba A. Benedict, Benedict College is a private co-educational liberal arts institution, offering 25 competitive baccalaureate degree programs. The Midlands HBCU welcomes students from all 46 counties in South Carolina, 30 states across America, and 26 countries around the world. 

Benedict offers several high-demand fields of study in STEM, Cyber Security, Mass Communication, Sport Management, Business Administration, Engineering, Computer Science, Biology, and Education. The College also has a diverse faculty and importantly, 80 percent of courses are taught by full-time faculty. 

Over the past ten years, three out of five Benedict College graduates have attended professional or graduate schools. There are over 18,000 proud Benedict Tigers throughout the nation. Benedict College has been a community leader for over 150-years and is a significant contributor to South Carolina and the region. Contributing $130 million and 1,218 jobs in total local and annual economic impact, a Benedict graduate working full-time throughout his or her working life can expect to earn $1.1 million in additional income because of their Benedict College degree. 

The College made front-page news in the spring of 2018 when it became the first South Carolina college to lower its tuition by 26 percent. Cutting tuition drew praise from the Commission on Higher Education, South Carolina’s education oversight body. The commissioner noted that the move Benedict College made should be applauded because it offers families affordability and students greater access to higher education. 

Benedict College has been highly regarded and exceptionally ranked for its programs by several academic and traditional publications.  For example, Benedict College was ranked as one of the top baccalaureate colleges in the nation by Washington Monthly magazine for creating social mobility and producing cutting-edge scholarship and research.  In 2019, Benedict College received the 2019 ACE/ Fidelity Investments Awards for Institutional Transformation and was named the HBCU of the Year by HBCU Digest

Benedict College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate and masters degrees. Five of the College’s degree programs hold national accreditation: The School of Education, Social Work program, Environmental Health Science program, Studio Arts Program, and the Tyrone Adam Burroughs School of Business and Entrepreneurship. 

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