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Jay Lynn: Championing Student-Athletes

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One of Jay Lynn’s, BS’81, fondest memories from his time at Vanderbilt occurred on January 8, 1979, when he and his friends joined perhaps the largest crowd ever to watch a basketball game at Memorial Gym. That night, 16,500 people poured into Memorial to watch the Commodores upset the undefeated and seventh-ranked LSU, 88-87. The game was “unbelievably exciting,” he recalls. The camaraderie and school spirit were palpable as an unexpectedly large student turnout led to people filling the aisles and the sides of the court.

Lynn’s love of Vanderbilt Athletics is one of the reasons he and his wife Susan made a planned gift to establish not one, but three, athletics scholarships supporting student-athletes in basketball, baseball and football.

“Vanderbilt helps mentor and grow great student-athletes. I am so proud of how they compete and succeed both in athletics and in the classroom,” says Lynn. “When they call to thank me and Susan for our support, we thank them for the inspiration they provide us.”

Lynn could only afford to go to college with scholarship support and by working several jobs, from intramural referee to a language lab aide. “To be the first to go to college in my family and to be blessed with going to Vanderbilt was just phenomenal. I needed help in realizing my dream of being able to afford college, and now I hope to help others achieve their dreams.”

His career in sales and marketing has moved him all over the country including from Dallas to Baton Rouge to Minneapolis and now Atlanta, and yet his connection to Vanderbilt has never waned.

“It’s been the one constant I’ve had. One of the things I’m so proud of is Vanderbilt is recognized everywhere. I work all over the country; and everywhere I go, everyone knows who we are.”

“Vanderbilt helps mentor and grow great student-athletes. I am so proud of how they compete and succeed both in athletics and in the classroom.”

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