Parents Bob and Kally Badavas make gift to fund study abroad scholarships

A $150,000 gift from Parents Council members Bob and Kally Badavas of Needham, Mass., will enable additional students to study in Central or South America each year. The Badavas Family Fund for Central and South American Study Abroad and Understanding will assist students with financial need who could not otherwise afford to study abroad.

The Badavas Family Fund will support students participating in Elon’s semester-long program in Costa Rica or another program in Central or South America. As part of their gift, the couple will make annual contributions of $5,000 to ensure that funds are awarded to students immediately.

The couple say their daughter Stephanie’s experience studying in Spain and Guatemala was “life-changing.” Stephanie is a junior majoring in human services.

“We know Elon is known for its innovative programs, and study abroad is a big part of that,” Kally Badavas says.

“Learning begins when you get outside your natural boundaries,” Bob Badavas says. “You can’t understand the world from inside America. You need to travel to different cultures. It opens your mind. Yet study abroad is expensive, and students need support.”

Bob Badavas is president and CEO of Tac Worldwide, and Kally is an active community volunteer. The couple have been members of the Parents Council since 2006 and will serve as co-presidents for 2008-2009.

This gift will be counted as part of the university’s upcoming fundraising campaign.