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No One Should Be Priced Out of a Quality Education

Justis Tuia

Justis Tuia ’07

What does a quality undergraduate education provide? Critical skills used in both personal and professional life? Exceptional preparation for graduate school? Life changing opportunities? Justis Tuia ’07 believes he received all of this and more when he came to Truman State University. Thanks to a generous scholarship, he got a college education without taking on crippling student debt. Now he aims to give as he received.

"With the cost of higher education continuing to increase and state support continuing to dwindle, I feel it is imperative that I invest in future members of the Truman family," Justis says. "No one should be priced out of a quality education, especially when employers are increasingly requiring an undergraduate degree as the minimal credential necessary. Ultimately, we all benefit when we co-create an informed, analytically critical and engaged citizenry."

Investment is the perfect word to describe Justis’ involvement with his alma mater. In 2016, he was honored as the Young Alumnus of the Year. The award was well deserved. He has been active in his regional alumni chapter, serves on the national alumni association board, regional campaign committees and more. In addition to his tireless service, he continues to donate generously. Along with outright gifts, Justis had the vision to designate Truman as a planned beneficiary of some of his assets. That decision was born from a desire to be more generous than his monthly budget would allow.

"As a relatively younger member of the Truman alumni family, much of my liquid capital is tied up in a mortgage, saving for a rainy day and retirement, and covering everyday expenses," Justis explains. "While I do set aside money on a monthly basis to contribute to Truman, designating the University as a beneficiary on various financial instruments allows me to ensure that an institution I love is cared for long after the obligations of daily living are gone."

As Justis has discovered, beneficiary designations offer many creative ways to give gifts larger than originally thought possible. To learn how to make a huge impact on future members of the Truman family via beneficiary designation, contact Marie Murphree at 660-785-4124 or

eBrochure Request Form

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Truman State University 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 to Truman State University, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Kirksville, Missouri, or its successor thereto, ______________* [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

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.

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 Truman 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 Truman 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 Truman 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 Truman where you agree to make a gift to Truman 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.

Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

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