It’s better to give

The last thing the Class of 2020 of Thomas Jefferson High School expected was to go back to middle school before graduating this spring—something they had to do when a tornado severely damaged their campus. They also did not expect to each get a $100 gift from JCPenney to make their stay at the temporary campus at Thomas Edison Learning Center a little less difficult.

JCPenney this week surprised and delighted the Thomas Jefferson Class of 2020 by donating $50,000 so that each senior could get a $100 gift card to spend at will. The rest of the 500 gift cards will be distributed to students who might need the extra help. Several seniors said they would be giving their gift cards to their parents so the whole family could share in their good fortune.

“We think it’s really important to give back to communities where our associates and our customers live and work and shop, and Thomas Jefferson was right in our backyard,” said Aubrey DeZego, Sr. Manager, Philanthropy and Community Relations at JCPenney.

While the community has been very generous with Thomas Jefferson, the JCPenney donation was the first one to go directly to students for their use, said Principal Sandi Massey, who got emotional as she spoke to students about the importance of striving to succeed in the face of the current circumstances.


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