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Steve Matteson BS Engineering '77

Steve Matteson  BS Engineering '77

"I've often asked myself-what can I do to give back to RIT for the lifetime of skills and career success I received? I never realized I'd get so much in return."

Steve received his engineering degree in 1977, but he realized he didn't just leave with a bachelor's degree in hand; he left with the skills needed to build a successful life. Reflecting back on his years as a student, Steve wondered who the people were who made it possible for him to graduate from this great university? As a Franz Haverstock Scholarship recipient, Steve wasn't aware of who those donors were, but he was struck by the notion that someone gave back to help him achieve his goals.

"When I first graduated, I was busy building a career and a life, so I didn't really think about giving back to RIT. Looking back over a successful career, I see that RIT gave me lifetime skills. I've used what I learned, both in the classroom and outside, throughout my life, both as a career 'systems thinker' and as a human being."

Steve wanted today's RIT students to know that people are willing to invest in them, as the Haverstocks did many years ago. Steve used his estate plans to make gifts of impact. Leveraging life insurance policies and with other gifts, he was able to provide valuable gifts to areas of the university he cares about.

What happened next was a pleasant surprise.

"Since I began giving to areas of the university, I've become involved at RIT all over again. I have the opportunity to guest lecture to students, mentor, join industry advisory boards, and participate in RIT activities around the country. And I remember why I thought so much about my RIT education as a new alumnus. My commitment to support the university became a gift to me - a gift of valuable relationships with amazing students, faculty members, and friends."

Steve let RIT's Office of Planned Giving know about the ways he'd included the university in his estate plans, and we are able to connect him directly to the people he is impacting so he can see firsthand how much his gift means. It's an honor for RIT to ensure that Steve's legacy is represented the way he wants.

We would love to do the same for you. Call Hal Burrall at 585-475-3106 or email us at and let us know if you've already included RIT in your will, or if you'd like more information on creating your bequest.

More Donor Stories

A charitable bequest is one of the easiest and most flexible ways that you can leave a gift to RIT that will make a lasting impact.

Steve Matteson  BS Engineering '77