Thomas ’10 and Lauren Cleveland ’09 are two Clemson alums who will always consider their alma mater their home away from home.
“To me, Clemson means home. … Clemson’s a place where we only spent four years, but we made memories that we’ll cherish for a lifetime,” said Thomas, a third-generation Tiger.
Because the University gave so much to the Clevelands, they began paying-it-forward after graduation and continue to give consecutively, making them ‘ever-loyal’ alumni and donors.
When considering giving back right away, the Clevelands didn’t think twice. “We realized early on that everything we enjoyed while we were in school — the resources, the opportunities, the Michelin Career Center — wasn’t covered by tuition alone. It was covered by people who are willing to support,” said Thomas. The Clevelands are thankful that they are able to contribute to Clemson each year and enjoy knowing that support from alumni provides students access to top-notch educational tools and resources. “It was an easy decision for us to give back immediately,” said Lauren.
It’s easy to see the impact the Clemson Family is making across campus, which is one reason why the Clevelands look forward to returning home to Tigertown.
“I think one of the most rewarding parts is getting to continue to come home to Clemson and see how that money really comes to fruition. We come back every football season, but we also try to find excuses to come back during the year and explore. It’s easy to see the benefits of giving back and being involved,” said Lauren.
Both Tigers are proud to say they will always remain ‘ever-loyal’ to their alma mater. “To us, being ‘ever-loyal’ to Clemson means knowing that however we’re giving — monetarily, with our time or showing up on football Saturdays — really goes a long way,” said Thomas.
The Clevelands often think back to their time at the University and encourage all alums to do the same. “You’re not just investing in a school. You’re investing in something that’s making a big difference in the community and the economy,” said Thomas.