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Current Gifts

All gifts are processed by the SOWELA Foundation, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization responsible for receiving and administering private donations to benefit SOWELA Technical Community College.

Cash, Check or Credit Card

Many donors choose to make an outright gift to the SOWELA Foundation with cash, check or credit card. You may wish to make a one-time gift, a recurring annual contribution or pledged payments made over a three-to-five year period. All gifts will be acknowledged within one week of receipt by the SOWELA Foundation.
  • Checks must be made payable to the SOWELA Foundation as a non-profit organization. Checks made payable to the SOWELA Technical Community College cannot be processed.
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 16950, Lake Charles, LA 70616
Physical Address: 3820 Sen. J. Bennett Johnston Avenue, Lake Charles, LA 70615

Gifts of securities to the SOWELA Technical Community College Foundation are encouraged and appreciated.

SOWELA is grateful to Morgan Stanley Wealth Management (Lake Charles) for waiving their fees to process your gift so that 100 percent of your contribution may be used for the purposes that you have designated. Instructions on how to make a gift of securities are as follows:

RJ Account#:
Tax ID#:
Broker Address:
Morgan Stanley Wealth Management
1450 William Street, 3rd Floor
Lake Charles, LA 70601
Broker Telephone:
(337) 475-0191

For the SOWELA Foundation’s official stock transfer information, click here. Please contact SOWELA through mail, email, facsimile, or telephone to establish the intended purpose of the gift (i.e. area of greatest need, scholarship, etc.,) when the transfer is made.

Click here for the most common questions and answers about giving securities, or if you have additional questions, contact Marianne White at (337) 421-6903 or

Donors may specify how their gift should be used, such as:
  • Area of Greatest Need
As SOWELA grows and changes to meet the needs of the economy, it is imperative that the College maintain adaptability to meet those changes. Contributions made to the area of greatest need provide executive leadership the flexibility that is often needed in decision making regarding allocation of scarce resources.
  • NOW Scholarship
Donors may wish to create and name a NOW Scholarship by making a minimum contribution of $1,000. Once the proceeds from the named NOW Scholarship has been awarded to a student(s), the fund is depleted and the scholarship ends. The donor, however, has the option of contributing to the NOW Scholarship on a recurring annual basis to ensure that the fund remains in effect.
SOWELA’s Executive Director of Institutional Advancement (EDIA) will work with the donor to determine the criteria for awarding the named NOW Scholarship. For example, a donor may choose to create the John B. Doe Scholarship in Aviation for an entering student in a credit program from the surrounding five-parish area. The donor may, instead wish to leave the award criteria up to SOWELA’s Financial Aid office for determining the award criteria.
  • Endowed Scholarship
A donor may wish to create and name an Endowed Scholarship by making a one-time or pledged contribution (payable over a period of up to five years) of a minimum level of $10,000. Once the minimum endowment level of $10,000 has been reached, the funds are invested for one year. After one year, the interest earned from the funds may then be awarded to the student(s). The principle will remain intact in perpetuity. Funds may be added to the named endowed scholarship at any time.
SOWELA’s EDIA will work with the donor to determine the criteria for awarding the named endowed scholarship. For example, a donor may choose to create the Jane P. Smith Scholarship for a student studying nursing with the scholarship available during the duration of their studies as long as they maintain an overall grade point average of 3.0 or higher. The donor may, instead wish to leave the award criteria up to SOWELA’s Financial Aid office for determining the award criteria.
Click on Scholarships to view the current list of funding opportunities available to students.
  • Specific Department/Program
SOWELA provides classroom instruction, hands-on training and field experiences that are unmatched in many higher educational settings. As such, the financial needs for supporting these programs vary according to technology needs, equipment requirements, instructional costs, supply expenses, etc.

SOWELA’s EDIA will work closely with the donor to identify the area within the College that would best benefit from the donor’s generosity.
  • Faculty Development
For faculty to remain current in their specific field of study requires that they take advantage of continued training opportunities by attending industry-specific conferences and peer institution workshops. Faculty also need access to industry-specific books, publications, periodicals or other research. With state-appropriations being continually reduced and with State of Louisiana employee travel often times frozen, funding to support faculty development is imperative. In addition, providing adequate financial support for faculty development assists in recruiting and retaining competent and skilled instructors.

SOWELA’s EDIA will work closely with the donor to identify which faculty can most benefit from the generosity of the donor.
  • Facilities with a Purpose (ACT 360)
In May 2013, the Louisiana House of Representatives approved Senate Bill 204 (SB204), now called ACT 360 of the 2013 Louisiana Legislative session, as a statewide initiative to improve Louisiana’s Community and Technical College facilities, providing increased training capacity and opportunities for students and business and industry partners throughout Louisiana.

The legislation authorizes financial and construction of 29 facilities in the amount of $251.6 million. Of the total cost of the construction projects, 12 percent or $34.3 million must be provided from local private matching funds. Two of the 29 construction projects have been designated for SOWELA. The new Student Services Building and the new Gaming, Hospitality and Tourism Management Building, also home to the Culinary Arts Institute.

Contributions to serve as matching funds for ACTS 360 ensure that SOWELA benefits from the $251.6 million in construction funding available. Since the funding is being offered on a first-come, first-served basis, it is imperative that the match be obtained as soon as possible.

SOWELA may accept pledges for ACT 360 paid out over time, however, all required funds to complete the construction project must be in hand prior to being placed on the construction project list.

Tribute Gifts

A gift given to the SOWELA Foundation in memory of, in honor of, or in special recognition of (birthday, anniversary, graduation, etc.) someone is a generous and thoughtful remembrance of that person. When you make a tribute gift, the honoree or family member is notified that the gift has been given in their name. (The dollar amount of the gift is never revealed.)

To make a tribute gift, simply include the tribute information as an enclosure with the gift. Please include the individual’s name, address, city, state, zip and the reason for the tribute. In the case of a memorial gift, also include the family member(s) name, address, city, state and zip that you wish to be notified of the gift given.

Matching Gifts

Many employers sponsor a corporate matching gift program that allows you to double, triple or quadruple the amount of your gift. Matching gift programs are not always limited to the corporate employee; they are often also available to widows/widowers of the employee and retirees. The impact of your gift can grow considerably when tied to a matching contribution from an employer.

If your company is a matching gift employer, request that they provide you with a matching gift form. Once you have completed the form and signed and dated where appropriate, submit the form along with your gift to the SOWELA Foundation, P.O. Box 16950, Lake Charles, LA 70616.

To inquire about whether you or your spouse are employed by a company that offers a matching gift, contact your employer directly or speak to, SOWELA’s Executive Director of Institutional Advancement, at (337) 421-6903 or email

Planned Gifts

Planned gifts or planned giving is another way to support the SOWELA Foundation and often enables the donor to make a larger gift than normally might be made through annual income such as wages. A planned gift may be made during one’s lifetime or at their death as part of an estate plan. Planned gifts may come in the form of appreciated stock, real estate or proceeds from a life insurance policy, an IRA beneficiary designation or a retirement plan designation. It is important that the donor notify the SOWELA Foundation of the gift to ensure that it will meet the criteria of the Foundation’s Gift Acceptance Policy.

The donor is encouraged to discuss the planned gift with a qualified charitable gift planner or other professional advisor to determine the most appropriate gift that will meet their needs as well as the goals of SOWELA Technical Community College.

Bequest Language
The following language may aid you and your attorney in preparing your bequest to the SOWELA Foundation for the benefit of SOWELA Technical Community College:

I, [name], of [city, state, zip], give, devise and bequeath [written amount; percentage of the estate; specific asset; or description of property] to the SOWELA Foundation, a nonprofit corporation organized in accordance with the laws of the State of Louisiana for the unrestricted use and purpose of supporting SOWELA Technical Community College, an educational institution, located in Lake Charles, Louisiana.

The property comprising this gift may, for investment purposes, be merged with any of the general investment assets of the SOWELA Foundation. The gift shall be entered in the Foundation's books and records as the [desired name of fund] Fund, and shall always be so designated. The distributions from the fund shall be:
a) unrestricted, unless directed by a separate gift agreement; or
b) used to…[After consulting with the Foundation, include specific gift-use preference(s) here.]
If, in the judgment of the SOWELA Foundation Board of Directors, circumstances change which renders the designated use of this bequest to be no longer appropriate, the Foundation’s Directors shall direct use of this bequest to further the mission of SOWELA Technical Community College, giving consideration to the donor’s special interest as evidence by the purpose described above.

Share your Plans
If you choose to name the SOWELA Foundation as a beneficiary, please let us know of your plans by contacting the Executive Director of Institutional Advancement. This will enable us not only to show our appreciation of your generosity, but also to include your support in planning for the future of SOWELA.

Naming Opportunities

There are many naming opportunities for individuals, businesses and corporations interested in attaching their name to a building, laboratory, classroom, study area or other area. Current naming opportunities include:

Naming Opportunities
Donation Amount
Student Success Building$2,500,000
Culinary Arts Institute$750,000
Veterans Affairs Service Center$250,000
Student Services Area$200,000
Aerobic and Fitness Area$100,000
Entertainment/Gaming Center$75,000
Multi-Purpose Meeting Room(s)$35,000
Study Area(s)$25,000

Tax Benefits of Giving

SOWELA Technical Community College is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a TAX ID of 58-1973743. If you itemize income-tax deductions on your tax return, you may be able to take a tax deduction for the full value of your gift. The annual charitable deductions you can claim for cash gifts to public charitable organizations is limited to 50 percent of your adjusted gross income. However, you can apply any unused deductions for up to five more years, which gives you six full years to use the deduction.



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