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Ellis County Resident Establishes Emergency Assistance Fund for SAGU Students

May 19, 2022 Ellis County resident Refel Rushing donated $1,000 to SAGU to establish a designated fund that assists underserved students with non-tuition-related emergencies.

“When I was a college student, I remember finding myself in unexpected financial situations from time to time,” says Refel. “You’re trying to pay for college, and the next thing you know, your car has a flat tire, or you need a new radiator. The last thing I want is to see students taking out a payday loan or putting off their schooling.”


In the past, Refel created a foundation with assets of $300 million, which gives grants to organizations helping underserved students, and he established funds at his alma mater in San Marcos, TX, to assist students with similar needs. Now that he is a member of the Waxahachie and greater Ellis County community, he is determined to be more involved with the community and help meet its needs. Girien Salazar, Director of Development at SAGU, says, “The emergency assistance fund is another healthy step toward serving students holistically. This fund blesses SAGU students, period. I anticipate many other generous individuals and churches will understand its importance and commit their support.” Grants would help underserved students pay for non-tuition-related emergencies such as car repairs, winter clothing, laptop repair, or travel costs for funerals. The Advancement Office at SAGU will determine a simple, fair, and needs-based application process for students who may qualify for assistance next year. Refel plans to donate annually to the fund and encourages others to contribute and partner alongside him in providing emergency assistance to future SAGU students. Any person or church desiring to contribute to the fund may send a check or online donation to SAGU for the Refel Rushing Student Emergency Assistance Fund.

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