On Saturday, March 24, Nueva families, trustees, leadership, faculty, and staff gathered at the Annual Benefit Auction to raise funds for student financial aid. The evening's festivities, themed “Beyond the Yellow Brick Road,” celebrated an important Nueva tradition of coming together as a community to support meaningful fundraising for the school.
For the first time ever, the evening began with a Community Cocktail Reception that was free for community members and friends. More than 420 people attended, and with student musicians entertaining guests, and student artwork auctioned off, it was truly an inclusive evening focused on Nueva’s gifted learners.
At the Auction Dinner, class of 2009 graduate Drew Willoughby — who earned a BS in Neurobiology from Stanford University — spoke of the impact of his Nueva education on his life and future, an education that would not have been possible without generous donations from the community toward financial aid.
“I feel so fortunate to have been able to attend this school and am grateful to be a part of this community every day,” Drew said. “Thank you for being here tonight, enabling countless students like myself to remain a part of this Nueva family, and continuing to support a school that for me has become a synonym for home. Your generosity absolutely does not go unnoticed.”
Drew further illustrated what makes Nueva such a unique, treasured place for students like himself; “The answer for me,” he said, “is the culture of acceptance, encouragement, and compassion that is created first and foremost by Nueva’s teachers. Nueva teachers believed in me, and I in turn learned to believe in myself. If my own young mind was the lock, Nueva teachers were the keys that unleashed the imagination and creativity that allowed me to reach as high as I could.”
Currently, the school has awarded financial assistance to 20% of students across all divisions, with the average award numbers increasing each year. Donations allow Nueva to accept learners who are the best fit for the school, but who may not have the resources to attend otherwise. Drew’s speech inspired a heartwarming $579,000 in pledged giving for financial assistance.
“Your generosity makes a Nueva education possible for these students,” said Bruce Cozadd, Chair of Nueva’s Board of Trustees. “These dollars are critically important because they provide an excellent education for our children, and support our dedicated and inspiring faculty in pursuing professional development opportunities.
By Louise Schultze, Interim Director of Communications
March 28, 2018