News & Announcements

Bonnie and Peter Raquet Create High Impact Learning Fund to Support Engaged Learning

$500,000 gift will support paid internship and study abroad opportunities

Cleveland State University’s efforts to provide engaged learning opportunities outside the classroom will be significantly enhanced thanks to the creation of the Bonnie and Peter Raquet High Impact Learning Fund. The initiative will support service learning, paid internships, and study abroad opportunities for students in CSU’s College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. 

High impact learning practices have been shown to be highly effective in promoting student success and retention, a major goal of both the college and the university. The Fund is made possible thanks to a $500,000 gift, which is a component of CSU’s recently completed fundraising campaign Engage: The Campaign for Cleveland State University.

Bonnie Raquet holds a master’s degree in history from CSU and retired as executive vice president for corporate affairs with Cargill Incorporated, the global food and agricultural products provider. She received CSU’s Distinguished Alumni Award in 2016. Rev. Peter Raquet served as an ordained minister of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America from 1980 until his retirement in 2005.

“CLASS is extremely honored to be able to work with the Raquets to create this incredibly significant initiative, which will directly benefit our students,” says Gregory M. Sadlek, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. “The College has developed robust high impact learning opportunities, which directly connect classroom learning to the world beyond the campus and help our students enter their workplaces ready to succeed. However, financial constraints often make it impossible for our students to take advantage of these life-changing opportunities.  The High Impact Learning Fund will open the doors to success for many more talented CLASS students. ”

”We are pleased to provide the opportunity for students to expand their liberal arts education through experiences outside the classroom, as they grow in understanding how to live in communities and lead through transformational change,” says Bonnie Raquet

 “We hope that the students who benefit from this fund, upon graduation, will choose to serve, whether professionally or as volunteers, in socially and economically challenged areas to bring leadership to underserved or underdeveloped communities,” adds Peter Raquet.

CSU offers over 3,000 internship opportunities annually, more than any other public university in Ohio. The High Impact Learning Fund will provide funding to create paid internships to assist more CLASS students in being able to participate in these initiatives. The Fund will also be used to develop a new internship partnership between CSU’s Department of History and the Western Reserve Historical Society.

The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences also currently offers faculty-led study abroad initiatives in numerous countries, including Ireland, Thailand, South Africa and Morocco, allowing students to take courses with foreign universities while also conducting research and outreach activities with faculty. In addition, CSU partners with numerous affiliate programs around the world to place students in additional study abroad initiatives at numerous universities and non-profit institutions on six continents. The High Impact Learning Fund will provide scholarships and grants to assist CLASS students in deferring the costs of these experiences and helping more individuals take advantage of these opportunities.

“By taking advantage of these opportunities for local, national and global learning, students will be able to become effective and important leaders in their communities, nations, and society as a whole,” Bonnie Raquet says.