Dear MPA Alumni,

At our house, the Halloween decorations have been put away, the Thanksgiving Turkey yard blow-ups are standing proudly in the fading grass (to the delight of our sons), and I am reflecting on the concurrent themes of this month of November: money and gratitude.

Money has been a topic du jour of this month for our family, as we took the leap to take our 5 year old (MPA Kindergartener, Lewis) and 3 year old, Arlo, to Disney World and Legoland for the first time.

“Is this worth it? What will spending all this money do for them?” These questions swirled in our minds as we overpacked for the journey, walked tens of miles through 5 theme parks in 6 days, and as we laced up our shoes for Legoland on November 16th, these same questions arose as Give to the Max stories, appeals and requests began filling our inboxes, a bread crumb trail of all the causes we have ever invested our faith in over the last 15 years.

“Do you still believe in us?” is how I interpreted the core question of each Give to the Max email I received. In the case of MPA, as a Class of 2003 alumns and MPA ‘Lifer’ (K-12 attendee), myself, and current parents of an MPA student, our answer was and is a resounding ‘Yes!’

My wife and I chose to give to MPA on Give to the Max Day, because they have created access to an environment for our son, Lewis, that nurtures him so well, he stated after the first week of school this fall that “I wish I could move my bed there and stay there!” I graduated 20 years ago from the same halls that my son now walks, and I am reminded of the lyrics to ‘The Thanksgiving Song’ by Ben Rector in this month of November:

“Funny how it all looks different
But it feels the same
Like how life never stops changing
But some things never change”

In this month of November, on such a day as Give to the Max Day, we give our money to the places, people and ideas that give us gratitude.

‘Your Gift, Their Future’ celebrates the countless connections MPA students make each day on campus, across academic innovation, athletic prowess and flourishing arts programs. When I was a high school student at MPA in the early 2000s, gifts such as yours enabled the launching of the laptop program.

During the fall campaign stretch alone in 2023, you see the fruits of such gifts as cross country runners and The Blue Wave make their way to State, middle school students put on a stellar ‘Puss N’ Boots’ production with incredible set design and a NYT bestselling author and poet, Jacqueline West, visits campus.

“Is this worth it? What will spending this money do for them?” Whether it’s a family trip, a campaign gift or a Give to the Max Day infusion at the level you are able to contribute, you perpetuate the spirit, energy and ideals of a place that gives you and your children gratitude.

I can think of no better worth for money, myself, and I am grateful to have experienced MPA firsthand, 20-30 years ago, now seeing my son revere MPA as a second home, as I once did.

Apparently, a few of you out there share similar sentiments, as the challenges seen below were met during the MPA Give to the Max Day and Fall Campaign: $529,156 raised overall throughout the Fall Campaign and $356,491 raised on Give to the Max Day.

Because of your generosity and gifts, students will continue to thrive and joyfully experience opportunities at MPA that will shape and enhance their future(s), in the years to come.

On behalf of the current MPA parent community, the Alumni Association and all our beloved MPA teachers and staff, we are thankful for you this season!

See why others gave by reading the comments here.

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