In honor of his life-long quest for knowledge and his pride in the social progress Miami University has made, William D. Manchester (Miami '59) has established a $185,000 planned gift, endowing scholarships in support of students with financial need and Miami's LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) students.
“I simply feel it’s time to give back,” Manchester said. “Though I’ve spent most of my adult life in the East, so much of my heart and soul are still in Ohio and always will be.”
A native of Ashtabula, Manchester spent more than 39 years in New York City. During that time he served in a variety of public relations roles, mostly with non-profit organizations. Following his retirement, he moved to Philadelphia, where he is an active member of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Temple University Center City Campus.
“I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, an intellectual or a scholar, but I love learning and I am curious about so many things,” Manchester said.
Manchester, whose nephew James S. Metcalf (Miami '74) and nieces Susan M. Metcalf (Miami '77) and Barbara Metcalf Wymer (Miami '78) are also Miami graduates, was avidly involved as a Miami undergraduate. He is a former editor-in-chief of The Miami Student newspaper, was a member of Alpha Delta Phi fraternity and also served on the atudent affairs council.
Today Manchester stays connected through Miami’s 1809 LGBT Alumni Association, an organization that inspired him to support Miami’s LGBT students.
“I simply felt that if I were going to leave money for scholarships, some should help LGBT students,” said Manchester. “I still cannot believe that I have lived long enough to be a member of an LGBT alumni organization. I had no idea gays would make so much progress.”
The gift comes as Miami celebrates the 25th anniversary of the founding of its Gay Lesbian Alliance—the first such student group on Miami’s campus—and the 15th anniversary of the 1809 LGBT Alumni Association. According to Barbara Jones, vice president for student affairs at Miami, Manchester’s gift makes a profound statement.
“Through his generosity, Bill has not only made a Miami education accessible to more Miami students, he has made a statement to Miami’s LGBT students about the support they have from alumni and the Miami community,” Jones said. “His enthusiasm about giving back to Miami and supporting current and future generations is inspiring.”
Manchester’s commitment supports the Miami University Campaign For Love and Honor, a $500 million initiative supporting student-learning opportunities, as well as scholarships, faculty, academic programs, facilities and grounds.