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In Saint Michael's Corner -- a Champion

Time and again through Everest Smith's life, people called his dreams impossible, but the determined former Golden Gloves boxing champion always found a way to answer the bell and make admirers of doubters.

So when a recent life-threatening illness caused Everest '56 to take stock of his past, he knew it was time to act on another of his life's most persistent "impossible dreams." In a noble gesture of gratitude all the more striking for the donor's relatively modest lifestyle, Everest established a planned gift that will ultimately result in a $1 million scholarship fund.

Everest said the Edmundite fathers of Saint Michael's College took up where Sacred Heart teaching brothers in Rhode Island left off as his early inspirational father-figures, steering him narrowly clear of reform school with good religion, academics and coaching. These men placed him on a solid path to conspicuous achievement as an athlete, U.S. Marine officer, championship high school coach, educator and family man.

To make such a substantial gift seemed barely feasible to Everest at first glance until he got down to work with financial advisers and Saint Michael's staff experts to create a novel planned gift arrangement involving life insurance and annual support.

The eventual net effect will be creation of the Everest P. Smith Jr. Memorial Scholarship, which will honor the donor's legacy of perseverance and hard work. The fund will provide financial assistance to deserving students who are sophomores or older with a minimum 2.5 GPA, and who are involved in campus ministry, preferably chapel worship activities. Then preference will be given to students involved in varsity athletics, theater, ROTC or Fire and Rescue. The award will be renewable through the recipients' senior year, with a minimum award of $10,000 per student per year.

Everest said he struggled to make ends meet during college, causing him to miss out on the full experience of campus life, though he was still able to play football for two years while participating in boxing, drama and Catholic groups along the way. He hopes recipients of his scholarship can "take advantage of the opportunity to grow through faith, education and teamwork as well as experience campus life to the fullest."

"My wish is that these scholarship recipients will be inspired to give back when they are in a position to do so," he said.

Terri Selby, director of parent programs for Saint Michael's, said that while she and Everest worked out the particulars of the scholarship, Susan Moses, director of planned giving, played a central role in fine-tuning the technical aspects of funding. "That's what makes this so special. Ev really researched this, enjoyed the process, treated it as a project, and enjoyed meeting with us and discussing different avenues of funding," Selby said. "Ev wants to serve as an example to others who may think they can't make a gift of this size to Saint Michael's when in fact they could. To me this is a gift from the heart. He loves Saint Michael's so much that he wanted to find a way to give a million dollars, and he did, to the benefit of future Saint Michael's students."

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Learn What Matters

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Saint Michael's College 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 give, bequeath, and devise to Saint Michael’s College, an educational organization established by law at One Winooski Park, Box 256, Colchester, Vermont 05439, whose Federal Tax ID number is 03-0179403 [here follows the dollar amount or percentage of the gift, or an accurate description of the securities, insurance policies, retirement funds, or the amount or percentage of the residual estate, or the real estate or other assets given].”

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 Saint Michael's College or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

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 potential 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 may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. 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 Saint Michael's College as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. 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 Saint Michael's College 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 Saint Michael's College where you agree to make a gift to Saint Michael's College 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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