An Act of Generosity

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Apr 02, 2015
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Current Events, Generosity

Too often I find personal finance curricula (ours included) are short on lessons about how be a great way to show generosity to our fellow man (and woman).  Often this generosity is not measured by the size or amount of the gift but rather the thought that went into it.  That is why I was so struck by the recent passing of Dean Smith (full disclosure:  I attended UVA and recall having a far less favorable opinion of Mr. Smith then) and his final gift to his players:

From ESPN.com (their first appearance in this blog):

Dean Smith got a chance to thank his players one last time.

The former North Carolina coach, who died last month at 83, directed his trust in his will to give $200 to every letter winner who played for him during his 36 seasons as head coach at the school…The letter addressed to Dante Calabria, who played on Smith’s 1993 national title team, was circulated on social media Thursday. Smith’s message was to “enjoy a dinner out compliments of Coach Dean Smith.”

One of the best quotes from a former player shows how one act of generosity can lead to more generous acts:

Zwikker said the $200 check is unlike any other money he has received.  “I don’t think I can cash this,” he said. “If anything, I will donate it to a good cause.”

About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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