the “f” stands for “financial aid fund”

Dearest Terrans,


     It has been almost nine years since I first entered the magical dwelling at 62 Washington Road in Princeton. A perfectly imperfect place called Terrace Club. At the time I thought, what a unique, curious house in the middle of such a pristine university. I had no idea. For me, finding Terrace was like discovering Hogwarts in the middle of Scotland. The cavernous rooms, colorful beasts poking their heads out from under steps, and I swear, sometimes the staircase even moves. As at Hogwarts, the inhabitants of Terrace are diverse, nerdy, cool, and well, weird. The difference is that Terrace Club is real, and you don’t have to find Platform 9¾ to become part of it.
     Terrace remains open to all who desire her, but through the years, I have seen a growing need from our members for financial aid. As Princeton continues to strive for more economic diversity in its admission process, the need for financial assistance continues to increase. And of course, the impact of the pandemic has only magnified the financial struggles of current Princeton students and their families. Still, we are committed to provide all the help we can to ensure that financial constraints are not an obstacle to joining Terrace.
     Despite Terrace’s current aggressive financial aid policies—which include standard parent
contribution–based discounts, work programs, and case-by-case grants that help members afford Terrace—we simply need to do more.
     With this in mind, we are proud to announce the initiation of our alumni-sponsored Financial Aid Fund. We hope that you, our magnificent alumni, can contribute to this cause and continue to help make membership to our club accessible for all future Terrans.
     I have seen firsthand the immense positive effect that Terrace has on those who seek it. Sometimes it is life-changing. I have heard many stories from members who felt that they did not fit in anywhere else, but found a place they fit comfortably at Terrace. I have seen the joy in so many alumni when they return home to Terrace, for Reunions or just a visit. I have felt such incredible love from so many members who have shared a small piece of their lives with me. Terrace needs to continue to open her arms to all who want and need her. Please consider donating whatever you can to this cause.

     We have amazing plans for our Second Virtual Reunions as we celebrate the nearing end of the pandemic and our tenacious Terrace community looks forward to more normal times when we can see each other in person.


Steve Krebs
General Manager
     The Terrace grad board is excited to announce the initiation of an alumni-sponsored Financial Aid Fund!
Pre-pandemic, Terrace offered an average of $60,000 per academic year in financial aid to 40% of our members. This financial aid has historically been funded by our operating budget. For the upcoming school year, we have made financial aid less restrictive to include more students with varying needs not met by the University financial aid calculations. Similarly, given the ongoing, negative financial impact of the pandemic, we believe that it is in the best interest of our members to lower our dues for the upcoming ’21–’22 school year.
     Thus, given both our lack of revenue from this past year and a decline in revenue for the upcoming year, we anticipate that our operating budget may not be enough to fund our financial aid program.
Just as Terrace was the first club to recognize that gender, sexual orientation, religion, or other status should not prevent someone from participating in an eating club community, we want to make sure financial status doesn’t deter anyone from joining. Therefore, we are starting a dedicated alumni-supported Financial Aid Fund to ensure that financial hardship is not the reason a person may not join Terrace. Our intent is to expand our financial aid program to even more students than in the past because it is in the Terrace spirit to welcome people seeking to be a part of our community.

     We hope you will donate to our Financial Aid Fund. We especially appreciate recurring donations, as this will ensure future Womblings will enjoy our club, Terrace, for years to come.

Food = Love,

Abby Kalmbach ’00 & Victoria Lee ’16
Development Committee Co-Chairs

Financial Aid FAQ

Why is Terrace expanding financial aid offerings now?
     The pandemic created a lot of economic turbulence, and we want to ensure that Terrace is available now more than ever for those still in uncertain waters.


Has Terrace given grants in the past?
     Yes (see above) or email us for more details


I had previously donated to the capital campaign after connecting with someone from the graduate board. Are those funds now being put toward financial aid?
     The club is still making physical improvements, including a rebuilt back deck, ADA-compliant first floor restroom and other projects. Some of the larger components of the renovation project were slated to be announced publicly at Reunions 2020, but are now on hold until we have a better understanding of serving and dining facility operations in a post-pandemic world. The Financial Aid Fund is a separate effort responding to evolving needs of members, and repeated requests from alumni to direct their contributions toward the member experience.


Who will receive Terrace financial aid grants, how much will they receive, and who decides?
     We welcome applicants for financial aid at Terrace, whose funding will be distributed via a combination of base grants
determined by University financial aid methods, plus discretionary grants determined by Terrace’s financial aid committee.


Do other clubs give financial aid?
     Maybe, but ours goes further to include discretionary grants that don’t fall neatly into the University’s eligibility requirements.


How much does Terrace need?
     Gauging demand year-to-year is difficult, and challenging to predict in advance. What would help expand the Terrace experience for future (future, future) generations, is sustaining recurring donations that help spread the food and love.


How can I participate?
     You can set up your donation at our donate page, and identify a one-time or monthly amount that works for you.


Can my donation be tax-deductible?
     Unfortunately at the moment, financial aid donations are not tax-deductible, as financial aid is considered an operating expense as a 501(c)(7) organization. However, you can still make a tax-deductible donation through PPF (also available on the donate page).


Everyone needs a community. Our lives are filled with stressors that we can’t handle alone—we need a support system. For my first couple years at Princeton, I bounced around different communities not quite finding the fit for me. That was until I had the honor of joining Terrace F Club. Suddenly, I was surrounded by like minded peers. As the first practicing Sikh to join Terrace, you might think I would feel ‘different’ from others, but in fact the opposite was true. I felt more welcome among my fellow Terrans than in any other group at the university. I did not know it when I joined but one of Terrace’s classic phrases is “every Terran is a Terran.” How true that would turn out to be. Perhaps it was Terrace’s great aid program that allowed people who would otherwise be forced to not join any club due to cost that created this catalyst for acceptance. Coming from one of the lower socioeconomic classes, many of my friends tended to also struggle with finances. It was perhaps natural, then, that most of my friends also gravitated towards Terrace where the staff was willing to work with students to try and make the expenses work.

I generally conceive of my Princeton experience in two halves: The pre-Terrace era and the post-Terrace era. Academically, socially, and mentally, everything improved for me once I found my community. The Terrace library culture was a boon to me during my work as everyone encouraged each other. The social culture kept me motivated to keep working hard. This was the support I needed to make it through that I could not find elsewhere. The strength of this culture proved itself as the pandemic descended on us all. The week of March 14th when campus was evacuated was a surreal period of time that is impossible to describe in words. It exists in my memory as a series of emotions that I have never felt before and perhaps will never feel again. What I can say, though, is that the Terrace community came together in those feverish days as a community ground for support and grieving. A unified spirit that lamented the great peril that was set to ravage the world and the fact that, for many of us, those few days would be the last we spend together. For some, the very real idea that some may not live to see their first reunions. I have never felt more welcome than when some 30 or 40 members left their hand prints above the Terrace TV room entrance—a signal to those who will come that we lost precious time together but that our spirits will forever remain enshrined with the club. This sounds hyperbolic, but the discord and Zoom events through the pandemic have shown that the Terrace community remains united.

In my time I tried to give back to the Terrace community. You could often find me bringing down dishes and cups or working duty. I also applied to and became a Peer Mental Health Advisor for the club, a position that has allowed me to bring a variety of meditative practices to the wider community. None of this would have been possible had I not been able to receive financial aid and afford membership. Trying to conceive of my time at Princeton without Terrace would be like trying to imagine Harry Potter without Gryffindor, or the Lord of the Rings without the Shire. Sure, it’s possible but all of what’s important would be lost. The plot lines would have adapted, the story would climax and end, but the spirit would all be lost. I am forever indebted to the Terrace F Club.

Jaspreet Khalsi ’20

First coming to Princeton, many students fall victim to imposter syndrome, myself included. The feeling of not fitting in, being good enough, or unique enough for Princeton is an almost universal experience and one very close to my heart. Sophomore year especially is a time when many Princeton students experience a crisis of identity. When I was a sophomore, my friends and I, for the most part, joined different eating clubs. I didn’t think I would join an eating club at all – in fact, I didn’t have the money to join a lot of the other leisure clubs and activities my peers joined. I supported myself throughout college, as my mom worked as a special-ed aide and barely made ends meet. I had to work multiple jobs to get through Princeton, and I rarely felt joining an eating club would be possible.

I joined Terrace on a whim Sophomore spring with one of my friends who convinced me to join. I remember not knowing anyone when I went the first night, but I instantly felt welcome in the club. I quickly attended all the events, ate all possible meals I could there, and made friends who I still keep in touch with today. Before Terrace, I felt like I didn’t have an identity at Princeton, a group I really belonged with. However, the ability to join Terrace helped shape my entire Princeton experience. 

Before joining Terrace, I didn’t have a group of friends there, didn’t know any members, and didn’t frequent the club. That still surprises me to this day because that club became one of my homes on campus. I studied in the library on the second floor almost every night. I spent every night out in the basement of the club, and later became the duty chair of Terrace. I repped my plethora of gear around campus. I convinced many of my friends to join in the grades below me and always advocated for the club. I helped with events, and joined whenever I could. 

I truly love Terrace and I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to join through financial aid. Having a place on campus I felt was home, and I felt like I could be myself, was irreplaceable.

Taylor Mills ’20

​During my four years at Princeton, I felt more relaxed, safe, and welcome at Terrace than at any other place on campus. Day to day, Terrace was a place to enjoy awesome food, to connect with friends, and to focus in the upstairs library with many coffee refills on hand. These habitual parts of life at Terrace were so rewarding and fulfilling because they were always founded on the care of Terrace’s staff, its officers, and its community. Terrace’s community is small enough to know and recognize every member of the club, a closeness that lends each Terran an identity as a member of our club. Terrans always look out for each other, whether across the lunch table or across the main dining room on a night out. My happiest memories from Princeton are from Terrace, but even more importantly, some of the most stressful and even fearful experiences at Princeton were resolved or alleviated by the help of the Terrace community, and even the sheer comfort of being within Terrace’s walls.

​As a student dependent on University financial aid and multiple campus jobs in order to make my studies at Princeton feasible, Terrace F. Club’s financial aid program was the most important blessing and influence on my wellbeing as an upperclassman. My upperclassman years would have been drastically different without the rich community at Terrace F. Club and the positive influence Terrans have had in my personal growth. Most importantly, Terrace very much became a home within Princeton for me, and thus my Princeton experience is inseparable from my experiences at Terrace. The club’s financial aid program made it possible for me to remain a member at a time when it appeared financially impossible for me, and for that I am very grateful. Financial aid at Terrace is more than financial support; for students such as myself, the financial aid program indirectly provides for our wellbeing, health, and even safety via the genuine care of the Terrace community.

Emilie Szemraj ‘20