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Scholarship, faculty support create success

Drake Law launches student into dream career

When asked about her Drake Law experience, Madelyn Smith, LW'15, ticks off an impressive résumé: clerkships at the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Hennepin County Attorney's Office in Minnesota, an internship with an Iowa Supreme Court justice, and Drake Law Review, among other accomplishments. These experiences, gained as a student at Drake Law, helped her secure a job as a criminal defense attorney in Minneapolis.

"I was so happy I was able to find a job right out of law school that I want to build my entire career on," she says.

Smith credits close mentorship from Drake faculty as one factor in her success. Faculty members helped her network in the Twin Cities, reviewed her résumé, and prepped her for her interview.

"It was shocking at Drake [to see] how involved the professors are and how much they care about your success," says Smith. "Breaking into a new market without the help of my professors would have been very difficult."

Scholarship support also made it possible to pursue her dreams. Smith was the recipient of the Elizabeth Hyde Brown Scholarship.

"The scholarship changed everything for me in terms of where I set my bar of possibility," says Smith. "I was able to choose internships and clerkships without focusing on what was going to benefit me financially. There is no way I could have taken two unpaid clerkships if I hadn't been financially stable, and those experiences are what helped me get a job in criminal defense, which I absolutely love."

You Can Shape the Future for a Law Student
If you would like to provide educational opportunities for students like Madelyn Smith, contact John Amato at 515-271-2849 or john.amato@drake.edu to discuss your giving options.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Drake University a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I, [name], of [city, state, ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to Drake University [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to Drake or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

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Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate, or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the gift tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Drake as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Drake as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and Drake where you agree to make a gift to Drake and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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