Rosemary and Mark Schlachter

Donor Story – Rosemary and Mark Schlachter

March 17, 2023

“This might be one of the last moments we get to sit in this building,” reflected The Chatfield Edge’s Director of Development, Kelly Watson, on a chilly Friday afternoon. She is chatting with decades-long supporters Rosemary and Mark Schlachter inside the Over-the-Rhine campus of the former Chatfield College.

The building is currently up for sale. It has served as a place of learning infused with dignity for all kinds of students for seven years. Wherever they were coming from in life, Chatfield was a place that was beautiful, clean, and full of compassion.

“But the most important part of what we did has never been delivered in the classroom,” stated Mark emphatically.

Our most important work happens outside the classroom

And that’s the message Rosemary and Mark look forward to communicating with scholarship supporters at this April’s Celebrate Our Scholars Brunch.

“So many small colleges across the country have had to close. But we’ve been brilliant in this transition,” said Mark. “We won’t be delivering the education. We’ll be helping our students attain it elsewhere, but ensuring they will be successful by providing scholarships and mentors.”

In January 2023, Chatfield College transformed into a nonprofit resource organization, The Chatfield Edge, to continue providing students with the critical support services needed to succeed through education.

“Chatfield has always mentored [students] in a way that would assure their success, so they wouldn’t drop out or give up. Chatfield helps people who need that extra help,” said Rosemary.

We all need luck, advantage, and help

At the Celebrate Our Scholars Brunch, one of the most impactful portions of the program is when the students tell their stories about what Chatfield has meant to them.

“You always get one story that lights up the room,” Mark says with tears in his eyes.  “There was a young woman with two elementary-aged children who talked openly about how hard it was being a full-time student, working a full-time job, and having two young children. She said, ‘There were times at one in the morning that I’d say I can’t do it, but then I’d think, what am I going to say to the kids if I quit?’”

Another story that impacted Mark: a student whose 41st birthday was the same day as the Scholarship Brunch last year. She had four children and recently found out she was expecting her fifth. But she had earned her associate degree in liberal arts with Chatfield’s help and was continuing to earn her bachelor’s degree.

We look forward to welcoming this year’s scholarship supporters

As for this year’s program, attendees will have the opportunity to meet the first cohort of The Chatfield Edge Scholars – students attending universities throughout Greater Cincinnati but still actively supported academically, financially, emotionally, and spiritually by their Chatfield family.

“People give to other people, and this is a chance for our donors to meet the kids they are helping go to school when they couldn’t go otherwise,” said Rosemary. “It’s always good to give people an opportunity to be generous of spirit.”

The Celebrate Our Scholars Brunch takes place at the former OTR Cincinnati Campus, 1544 Central Parkway, on April 15, 2023, from 10 a.m. to Noon. Join The Chatfield Edge as we support our first cohort of Chatfield Scholars and raise money for future scholarships and operating expenses. Register now or contact Kelly Smith at 513-875-3344 x—117 or for more information.

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