Benita Zahn Makes $15,000 Gift In Support of Students’ Dreams

Benita Zahn '76Benita Zahn ’76, an anchor for WNYT-TV in Albany, N.Y., and an avid supporter of SUNY Oswego, says she always knew she wanted to give back to her alma mater. After her father died, Zahn put part of the money she inherited toward her master’s degree. The rest she donated to SUNY Oswego.

“For me, going to college was a financial stretch,” Zahn says. “Any little bit would’ve helped.” Zahn gave $15,000 to establish the Benita Zahn ’76 Endowed Theatre Fund.

She says she hopes the fund will “take a little bit of the worry away” from students struggling financially.

The endowment will support full-time students majoring in theatre who show exceptional levels of dedication and involvement in the department. “The study of theatre gives students the ability to dream and the support to act on their dreams,” Zahn says. Her own time as a student of theatre significantly influenced her approach to life.

“No one ever told us no,” she says. “They said ‘let’s find a way to make it happen.’”

Zahn has often contributed her time and expertise to Oswego. She served on the 2005 Reunion committee, served as the 2008 Torchlight Commencement Eve speaker and was a panelist at the 2010 Dr. Lewis B. O’Donnell Media Summit. She is a member of the School of Communication, Media and the Arts Advisory Board.

“Involvement has really enriched my life by allowing me to meet the next generations of SUNY Oswego students,” Zahn says. “It’s been good to be able to share my experiences and to see the school blossom and change with the times.”

—Brittany Sperino Horsford ’14

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