Alumna courageously gives through joining the WPU Heritage Society

Mar 30, 2022

Tina Burden ‘82 was fortunate to retire early. 

Previously a Portfolio Manager, Burden unexpectedly found her career path after she graduated. She had graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) after earning her associates degree at what was then known as Peace College, now William Peace University (WPU). 

As Burden started to settle into retirement, she knew she needed to plan her next steps. One of those was to set up estate plans.

Burden’s estate plan allows her to think ahead about the people or organizations she wants to receive gifts in the future. She wanted her estate plans to support something she was passionate about and could courageously believe in. 

Burden’s mind then went back to her years at Peace College. 

She grew up in Williamston, NC and wanted to attend a school that made the transition of leaving easier. Peace College’s size and tight-knit community offered this. It provided her a sense of security and safety. It also taught her to think critically and prepared her for her time at UNC. 

Because of this, Burden decided to reach out to her alma mater to learn if it was somewhere she wanted to invest in for her estate planning. She soon discovered it was. 

From the start, Burden explained that the estate planning process was incredibly easy. Jodi Stamey, WPU Vice President for Advancement, led her through it step by step.

Stamey invited Burden to campus to see how WPU has changed and grown. Burden talked with students, met with a few members of the Senior Leadership Team, and saw the new programs at the University. She was impressed by the Esports major and teams and the focus on internship opportunities for students. 

“WPU’s leadership really understands how to continue to innovate and adapt to give students tools and skills needed for today’s workplace,” Burden said. “The University totally understands how to push forward into the future.”

Burden wants to be part of continuing the forward momentum. She explained that education needs to look to the future to continue to be relevant, provide necessary tools for students to build upon their courage and develop the confidence they need to turn their passion into purpose. 

“If I can give students the option to go to WPU, then that is money well spent,” Burden said. “ I want to give kids who might not be able to financially consider a school like WPU the option to consider it.” 

By including WPU in her estate plans, Burden became a member of the WPU Heritage Society. Alumni and friends who have made planned gifts or provisions in their estate plans for WPU receive this membership. The society was established to recognize those who have made the ultimate expression of their faith in the University. 

“I know everyone has a different reason or different motivation on why they give, but I hope my gift encourages other alumni to consider giving to WPU, to reach out to Jodi, visit campus, and talk with students,” Burden said. “Visiting the University cemented the belief that my dollars could have a positive impact on campus. I can’t think of a better investment than helping students pursue a college education.”

To learn how you can give courageously by joining The Heritage Society, visit here or contact Jodi Stamey, Vice President for Advancement