Alumna's Donation Benefits SOLES and Honors Sacred Heart Legend

David and Willa RamsayWhile working full time in engineering, at General Dynamics in San Diego, Willa Ramsay attended night school and graduated from San Diego Evening College in 1964. In February 1965, she decided to quicken the pace and come to Alcalá Park as a full-time physics major at the College for Women.

Fifteen months later the San Diego native, who had been her class valedictorian at Grossmont High School, graduated with a bachelor's degree in physics in 1966.

But she didn't stop there. Willa taught at the Convent of the Sacred Heart in El Cajon while she completed her secondary teaching credential in June 1967. She earned a Master of Arts degree in science education, which she received from the College for Women in 1970. Her husband, David Ramsay, earned his own master's degree from what was then United States International University one week later. He took on the role as the official family typist.

"One summer she had to type practically a paper a night," says David, who takes just a little credit for his wife's success at the College for Women. "That summer, I typed about 500 pages. I was only a three-finger typist, so it was quite a trick getting it all done."

Willa, who later went on to earn a doctorate of education from the University of Southern California in 1975, has studied at many universities, but the one she still holds most dear is the University of San Diego. Willa still comes to campus regularly—sometimes even two or three times a week. She recently celebrated her 40th reunion and still loves seeing her former Sacred Heart classmates and professors. All those Sacred Heart lessons, friendships and memories were in her heart and on her mind when she and her husband decided to make a planned gift to the university to benefit the new School of Leadership and Education Sciences building, scheduled to open in 2007.

Their intentions were two-fold. First, she and other Sacred Heart alumni-from the College for Women and from other Sacred Heart schools throughout the United States-are working hard to raise the money needed to name the new building for founder Mother Rosalie Clifton Hill, who was the Superior of the Western Vicariate of the Religious of the Sacred Heart. And second, as an educator for 34 years, Willa wanted to do something to help future teachers.

"I taught at San Diego city schools and was the first female physics teacher at the high school," she says. "I absolutely loved every minute of it."

David and Willa, both physicists, also funded an undergraduate physics lab, which bears their name, in USD's Donald P. Shiley Center for Science and Technology. They are longtime participants in various Sacred Heart programs and other programs run by the Office of Planned Giving, and are members of the Puente de Oro Society. Puente de Oro, which means Bridge of Gold, symbolizes the people of one generation sharing their resources and values with those of future generations.

"We've lived here all our lives and we wanted to give something back," Willa says. "We believe in supporting the church and we believe in supporting education. What we need in our community is to educate people and to teach them the importance of giving back. That's why we give to USD."

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Degheri Alumni Center 206
5998 Alcalá Park
San Diego, CA 92110

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to the University of San Diego a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to the University of San Diego, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 5998 Alcala Park, San Diego, California, 92110-2492, or its successor thereto, ______________ [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to USD or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to USD as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to USD as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and USD where you agree to make a gift to USD and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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