Societies of Distinction

The Ferris State University Societies of Distinction honor those who preserve and enhance the university's tradition of excellence through their generous financial support. Every gift matters.

Crimson and Gold Society

The Crimson and Gold Society was created to recognize young alumni who are establishing a legacy of giving. Membership is awarded to students who graduated within the past five years and make a $100 annual commitment and any donors who make a $500 annual commitment. Benefits of membership include a personalized membership card with a discounts on a variety of Ferris services.

Annual Leadership Society

The Annual Leadership Society honors those who give $1,000 or more annually. Members are invited to attend several university events, are recognized in an issue of Ferris Magazine and The Ferris Foundation Annual Report honor roll, receive various university publications throughout the year and are honored at the Societies of Distinction annual recognition event. Members also receive a personalized membership card with Ferris discounts.
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President's Society

The President's Society, named to honor the distinctive and distinguished leadership of former Ferris presidents, celebrates the generosity of donors who make a cumulative gift of $10,000. Membership includes lunch with a member of the President's Council, dean, program coordinator, faculty member or current student at your request, a VIP parking pass and the benefits of membership in the Crimson and Gold and Annual Leadership societies.

Founder's Society

Membership in the society that honors the visionary founders and educators who helped turn Mr. Ferris' vision into a reality is awarded to donors who make a $25,000 cumulative commitment.  Benefits include a memento as well as the benefits of membership in the Crimson and Gold, Annual Leadership and Presidents societies.

Old Main Society

The Old Main Society commemorates the first building on the Big Rapids campus.  Dedicated in 1894, Old Main established the university as a credible higher-learning institution.  It stood for 56 years before fire destroyed it, leaving only the Alumni Building in its wake.  Society membership requires a commitment of a $50,000 cumulative gift.  Benefits include invitations to the university's largest and most significant events, in addition to those benefits awarded to members of the Crimson and Gold, Annual Leadership, Presidents and Founders societies.
 
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Abigail Smith Timme Society

Abigail Smith TimmeAlumna and university benefactor Abigail Smith Timme's name is synonymous at Ferris State University with providing opportunities through generosity. In 1968, the newly built library was named in her honor. Today, the former library has become the Timme Center for Student Services. The society that honors her is available to those who wish to make a planned gift. Membership includes a certificate of membership, recognition in various Ferris publications, including The Ferris Foundation Annual Report, invitations to Ferris events and special estate-planning forums, and a personalized membership card with Ferris discounts. Members also are honored at the Societies of Distinction annual recognition event.
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Phoenix Society

Following the fire that destroyed Old Main, then-President Byron J. Brophy declared "Ferris would go on!" Indeed it did. Like the mythological phoenix that rose from the ashes, the then Ferris Institute has grown to become a respected university. The Phoenix Society recognizes individuals who make a $100,000 cumulative commitment to help lead the university into the future. Members receive a distinctive memento and are invited to smaller and more personal gatherings, as well as the benefits of membership in the Crimson and Gold, Annual Leadership, Presidents, Founders and Old Main societies.

Carillon Society

The Carillon Society honors the historic Carillon Tower, a landmark that has graced the Big Rapids campus since 1968. Membership in the Carillon Society requires a $250,000 cumulative commitment. Members are invited as guests to The Ferris Foundation for Excellence Benefit, in addition to the benefits that come with membership in the Crimson and Gold, Annual Leadership, Presidents, Founders, Old Main and Phoenix societies. 
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Legacy Society

The Legacy Society was created to recognize those who demonstrate confidence in the university's tradition of excellence.  This society requires a commitment of a $500,000 cumulative gift.  In appreciation, members receive six tickets to The Ferris Foundation benefit as our guest, as well as all benefits associated with membership in the Crimson and Gold, Annual Leadership, Presidents, Founders, Old Main, Phoenix and Carillon societies.

Helen Gillespie Ferris Society

The Helen Gillespie Ferris Society honors the wife of Woodbridge N. Ferris and co-founder of what today is Ferris State University. Recognized by the state's superintendent of public instruction as the best geometry teacher in Michigan, Helen Ferris was deeply committed to education. After her death in 1917, Woodbridge declared "The life of Mrs. Ferris adds new luster to American womanhood."Membership in the society that celebrates her requires a commitment of a $750,000 cumulative gift. Members are thanked with opportunities to participate in many aspects of university life in addition to benefits afforded to members of the Crimson and Gold, Annual Leadership, Presidents, Founders, Old Main, Phoenix, Carillon and Legacy societies.

Woodbridge N. Ferris Society

Woodbridge N. Ferris was a visionary who believed all people deserve the opportunity to succeed.  In a 1916 speech to the Michigan Pioneer Historical Society, he famously said "My plea in Michigan - and it will be my plea to the last breath I draw, and the last word I speak - is education for all children, all men, and all women of Michigan, all the people in all our states all the time. The Woodbridge N. Ferris Society boasts members with those same ideals whose $1 million cumulative gift is an investment that fosters growth, fuels progress and transforms lives. In gratitude for that generosity, the university recognizes the knowledge and experience of donors as essential to its progress. Stewardship is discussed on a case-by-case basis, in addition to the benefits of membership in the Crimson and Gold, Annual Leadership, Presidents, Founders, Old Main, Phoenix, Carillon Legacy and Helen Gillespie Ferris societies.