KENNESAW, Ga. | Oct 19, 2021
Chris and Amanda Arrendale, both graduates from Southern Polytechnic State University (SPSU), now Kennesaw State University, feel like they have come full circle.
The Arrendales, who both faced financial challenges as students, became the first individual alumni to establish an endowment for students within the College of Computing and Software Engineering (CCSE). The couple were honored Thursday at a ceremony on the University’s Marietta campus to announce their “Never Stop Learning” scholarship to help qualified students pay for college.
Chris Arrendale graduated from SPSU with a Master’s in Information Technology and Software Engineering in 2004, and his wife, Amanda, graduated from SPSU with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics in 1998. Both struggled with paying for school and recognize the hardships many college students continue to face.
“We know, from personal experience, that one of the biggest burdens many students face is their financial situation,” Chris Arrendale said. “Our hope is that our gift will allow recipients to focus more on their schoolwork or internship, and not have that extra burden.”
The $50,000 scholarship will establish an endowment that will be awarded to students of CCSE who maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and demonstrate financial need.
“Chris and Amanda’s generosity will have a lasting impact on our students and our College,” Interim Dean of CCSE Sumanth Yenduri said. “I am grateful that they chose to invest in our students.”
The name “Never Stop Learning” comes from the couple’s philosophy on the importance of staying curious even after graduation. The Arrendales, who also have a dedicated “Never Stop Learning” bench on the Marietta campus, are excited about the opportunity to help shape the future of the College and said this is just the beginning of their involvement as alumni.
“We have such great memories of our time in College and wanted to find a way to give back and stay involved with the school that helped shape who we are today,” said Amanda Arrendale. “We are looking forward to seeing how our gift can help inspire future students and how it encourages them to pay it forward.”
The Arrendales hope the scholarship will inspire not only students on campus, but also encourage other SPSU alumni to reconnect with the University’s Marietta campus.
– Abbey O’Brien Barrows
A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu.