A Visionary Work: Janet E. Wilson
When Janet Wilson was a senior in high school, one visit to Barry College was all it took. She came home that evening and announced with excitement that she would begin her college journey at Barry in the fall.
It was the ideal choice. "Janet always cherished her memories of Barry," shares Kate Wilson, Janet's sister. "Being there brought out something in her that was wonderful. She confided in me that while she was a student, it was the first time in her life that she was told she was smart."
Janet answered a call to become a Dominican nun after her sophomore year at Barry. Even though she didn't graduate, she felt a deep and abiding tie to the school for the rest of her life.
She left the Sisters after eight years and returned to her hometown of Naples, Florida. There, she became an educator and shared with a community of children her inspirational teaching and passion for the arts.
Janet passed away last year. As she approached the end of her life, she talked with Kate about how she could use her money to make a difference. Kate's career was in higher education financial aid, and they would talk about the challenges of affording a college education, especially for students interested in creative careers.
Janet found the perfect way to honor her love for both art and Barry University: funding two scholarships for theater, art and photo students in her will.
Remembering the generosity of her sister, Kate says, "May the scholarship recipients always remember that one special person acknowledged their professional pursuits and cared deeply about their creative, visionary work."