The Jasper Challenge

What Is the Jasper Challenge and How Does It Work?

  • Helene and Ken Orce ’65 have pledged $1,500,000 as a challenge grant. The funds will augment qualifying planned gifts from alumni and friends.
  • Each qualifying planned gift made during a specific time period will benefit from an immediate 10 percent match from the Jasper Challenge.
  • The Jasper Challenge aims to inspire donors to support College strategic objectives.
  • The challenge grant will match gifts to the endowment and to facilities.
  • The challenge grant is expected to generate a total of $15,000,000 in new funds for endowment and facilities.

Jasper Challenge
With a $1,500,000 Challenge Fund, the College Will Generate:

Number Of New Gifts Gift Level Total New Giving Commitments 10% Challenge Match
125 $100,000 $12,500,000 $1,250,000
20 $50,000 $1,000,000 $100,000
40 $25,000 $1,000,000 $100,000
50 $10,000 $500,000 $50,000
  Total $15,000,000 $1,500,000


Reflections of a Manhattan College Beneficiary

I was asked to discuss briefly my fealty to and deep appreciation of Manhattan College. I believe that the following incident exemplifies the guiding principles and instincts of the institution as well as providing a glimpse into its mission and soul.

My father died suddenly at home on September 2, 1963 on his 25th wedding  anniversary at the age of 52. Neither of my parents graduated from high school. My father, in addition to working as a sign painter for the City of Yonkers, was the resident superintendent of the apartment house in which we lived.

His death closely preceded my scheduled return to Manhattan to begin my junior year. I never requested any help from anyone and assumed that my  college career was simply over. I arranged with the owner of the building in  which we lived to permit my mother, brother, and me to remain in our apartment, conditioned on my assuming the superintendent duties. I planned to continue to work at the local A&P, but on a more full-time basis to supplement my father’s modest pension.

Photo of Ken Orce and his wife, Helene

Ken Orce and his wife,

The day following my father’s death, I received a call from someone in the  Manhattan College administration (whose name, I’m embarrassed to say, I don’t recall) offering sincere condolences and advising me that my existing scholarships would be supplemented to cover fully all costs of attendance through graduation. I subsequently graduated with honors and went on to  Harvard Law School, where I also graduated with honors and was an editor of  the Harvard Law Review. When I retired a few years ago following a successful 40-plus-year law career, President O’Donnell reached out and rekindled my Manhattan College connection (thank you, Brennan).

Over time, I’ve come to appreciate more fully the generosity of Jaspers who  preceded me and enabled Manhattan  to provide life-altering support to me  and innumerable others. The core of  Manhattan’s ability to continue such  support depends on the continuing  generosity of generations of Manhattan  graduates. Rest assured that this  beneficiary will be forever thankful and inspired.

- Kenneth W. Orce, Class of 1965

For more information about the Jasper Challenge, please contact:

Elizabeth Marie Plaushin
Director Of Planned Giving

Kevin Courtney
Director Of Capital Campaign

Manhattan College
4513 Manhattan College Parkway
Riverdale, NY 10471


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