Every contribution counts

Supporting student awards can cost less than your daily coffee.

University of Lethbridge Bookstore Manager Annette Bright is as connected to students as anyone on campus. A staff member at the U of L for 30 years, she has always worked closely with students, first as a staffer in the library and then as a textbook buyer and now manager of the bookstore.

She thoroughly enjoys her connection to students, and it gives her an insight into their lives and the struggles they face.

Annette Bright
Bookstore manager Annette Bright sees the benefits of the SOS campaign in the students she encounters.

"The relationship between students, faculty and staff here is like a family. Students come to us for advice or just to say hi, and we get to share in their
accomplishments," she says.

It bothers Bright when she hears of students not being able to realize their potential because of the financial barriers they encounter.

"I get to know a lot of students and I hear about their struggles," she explains. "Often they can't afford food, rent or their course materials. It's troubling when they tell me they can't afford their books."

In 2005, the Supporting Our Students (SOS) campaign was initiated in response to those challenges. An annual campaign for faculty, staff and retirees, the SOS campaign allows the U of L community to support student awards.

Bright says she quickly saw value in the program and her involvement with SOS has gradually increased over the years.

"More and more people around became involved with the campaign," says Bright, "so I started giving and volunteering. It's the easiest thing to do."

Through her daily duties in the bookstore, she is often reminded of how important her donations can be to a student.

"I think about SOS the most when I see how much a student's books can cost," she says. "That's when I really hope the student is getting the benefit of a scholarship or bursary."

Bright isn't shy about her support of the SOS campaign, and her enthusiasm is contagious. She's quick to point out that gifts to SOS need not be large, especially if more of the campus community comes together to support SOS.

"Every dollar counts," she emphasizes. "Some people say, 'I can't give enough.' But if everyone on campus gave even $5 a month, we could help so many students!"

And, Bright reminds us, $5 is less than many of us spend on coffee even in one day.

For more information on Supporting Our Students or to make your contribution today, visit

This story first appeared in the October 2012 issue of the Legend. To see the full issue in a flipbook format, follow this link.