Historic Gift Bestowed Upon Rivermont Collegiate Print
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Brittany Marietta   
Monday, 15 February 2010 08:54

Rivermont Collegiate is both proud and excited to announce an historic alumni donation to fund a new merit scholarship program at the School.  The major gift comes from the late Janet Gezel, a 1944 alumna of St. Katharine’s.  Estate funds totaling nearly one million dollars will support promising students in meeting their academic and professional goals.  Rivermont is honored to receive this impressive donation, which will provide a significant boost to the financial assistance programs already available at the School.  This gift and previous gifts from alumni, family, and friends reflect confidence in the School’s goals of providing a quality college preparatory education to the students of the greater Quad Cities.

Janet Gezel’s gift was specified to be used towards the School’s endowment, with a portion funding two (2) merit scholarships every academic year.  Each scholarship will cover half of the yearly tuition and fees at Rivermont, with one being awarded to a student in grades 4-7 and the other to a student in grades 8-12.  These scholarships will be based on academic merit alone, rewarding the brightest, most talented students.

About 35% of Rivermont students currently receive tuition assistance, including need-based financial assistance, memorial scholarships, sibling discounts and reciprocal agreements with other local educational institutions.  Opportunities for tuition assistance ensure that Rivermont remains proudly committed to ethnic, socio-economic, and religious diversity.  As in the majority of independent schools, gifts from alumni, friends, parents, grandparents, and the community fill the gap between tuition and the actual cost of a Rivermont education.  Donors provide the vital resources to effectively deliver our mission – excellent academic, athletic, and artistic programs, talented and dedicated faculty, and quality facilities.  Rivermont is grateful to all past, present, and future donors, who help provide the excellence for which we are known.

Headmaster Rick St. Laurent remarked, “Janet’s gift is a heartwarming reminder of our alumni’s appreciation for the outstanding academic background and close personal relationships they developed at the School.  Alumni donations and support are the foundation of the school’s efforts to increase educational opportunities for talented students across the Quad Cities.”

St. Laurent added, “Rivermont has been fortunate over the years to have the generous support of its alumni, current families, and friends.  The spirit of contributing to the School is particularly important in today’s challenging economic environment.  This support is essential for the School to continue developing the intellect, character, and creativity of generations of students to come.  Janet’s gift along with other significant gifts is particularly gratifying as the School celebrates its 125th anniversary. Donations large and small help set the stage to ensure another 125 years of academic excellence.”

During her time at St. Katharine’s, Janet was a member of the Student Council, Glee Club, and Special Choir, and she played the part of Monsieur Diafoirus in the senior play, The Imaginary Invalid.  She also served as Class Vice-President and was noted in her senior class yearbook toalways be remembered for her cheerfulness.  Janet attended Sterling High School in Sterling, IL before transferring to St. Katharine’s in 1942.  Following graduation, Janet attended Lindenwood

College (now Lindenwood University) in St. Charles, MO.  She worked at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory from 1947 until her retirement in 1991.  In retirement she enjoyed reading and socializing with friends.  Janet passed at her home in Silver Spring, MD on February 16th, 2009.

Founded in 1884, Rivermont was originally organized as St. Katharine’s School, an Episcopal boarding and day school for girls.  Located at 10th and Tremont Streets in Davenport, St. Katharine’s thrived for over eighty years before dropping the boarding program in 1968 and becoming co-educational, adding St. Mark’s to its name.  In 1973, St. Katharine’s-St. Mark’s moved to its present location in Bettendorf, formerly the home of Joseph Bettendorf.  In 1980, the School amicably broke ties with the Episcopal Church and in 2001 the Board of Trustees voted to change the name to Rivermont Collegiate.  Today, Rivermont serves as the only preschool through twelfth grade private, independent, non-sectarian college-prep school in the Quad Cities area.

For additional information, contact Drew Boster, Director of Development, at

(563) 359-1366 ext. 306 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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