Name: Dr. Thomas S. Haggai
Residence: High Point, N.C.
Affiliation: Friend of Winthrop University
Gift Designation: Endowment
Thomas S. Haggai knows the importance of early education.
"Children have to be able to read and be inspired in the beginning to make a
life for themselves," he said.
Haggai credited the great teachers –
whom he can still name – he had in school in the first eight grades with his own
achievements and his strong belief in the value of education. Speaking of those
teachers, Haggai said that "when people invest in you, you can never really pay
them back, but you can pass it on."
In order to "pay it forward," he
established the Tom Haggai and Associates Foundation (THA) more than 40 years
ago, with a number of colleagues, in an attempt to assist college students
financially. The first THA Foundation scholarship was awarded in 1966, and today
more than 65 scholarships are annually awarded to often overlooked
nontraditional students who are committed to teach EC-sixth grades.
THA's Board of Governors have focused on nontraditional students because they
have life experience. "They often have children of their own, so they are able
to understand that each child is different," he said. "They also provide an age
balance at the college level and in the classroom."
underwrites seven nontraditional students at Winthrop to receive an annual
$5,000 award. THA Foundation opted to partner with Winthrop as one of the six
universities they support because of the College of Education’s national
reputation and attitude.
"They have terrific staff; the faculty care
and it trickles down," he added. "The campus is still warm even as it continues
Last updated: 03/28/2011