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UNC Donors Have a Long History of Helping to Advance Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

UNC students on campus

August 27, 2021

As a leader in education, the University of Northern Colorado remains committed to gathering diverse ideas, voices and individuals to shape the future of higher education. University Advancement and many UNC donors have long shared our commitment to the values of inclusion, equity and diversity. In fact, since the beginning of fiscal year 2021, several generous UNC donors have collectively gifted more than $925,000 in support of newly established scholarships that support diversity, equity and inclusion here at UNC.  

“Through the intentional efforts surrounding diversity, equity and inclusion; our donors continue to recognize that diversity is an essential element of the UNC educational experience,” said Tobias Guzmán, Ed.D., chief diversity officer and interim vice president for Student Affairs at UNC.  “Through their philanthropic support, our donors advance our commitment to Empower Inclusivity by providing UNC students the financial means to earn a college degree and enhance the overall student experience. The university is grateful for the support and care that our donors demonstrate by supporting funds that are rooted in diversity, equity and inclusion. I hear first-hand of our student’s gratitude and believe they, too, will return the kindness one day.”  

Below is a sample of the philanthropic work that has been accomplished in fiscal year 2021: 

UNC Theatre Arts alumnus Ben Klingemann ’10 and family generously established the UNC D.I.R.E.C.T. Scholarship to inspire students from underrepresented backgrounds to pursue careers in community theatre and theatre education.  

WeldWerks Brewing Co. partnered with UNC to establish the WeldWerks Diversity Scholarship, an annual scholarship for students of color, with preference given to students who have an interest in brewing science. 

WeldWerks Brewing Co. is issuing a rotating series of philanthropic IPAs that will support local non-profit partners. The inaugural IPA — 10K IPA: Unite Edition — supported UNC’s UNITE Program, which promotes diversity, equity and inclusion on the UNC campus.  

Long-time UNC supporters Bob and Bonnie Phelps have always championed UNC programs and scholarships that support our values and commitment to diversity and inclusion. To further this commitment, Bob and Bonnie established the African American Science, Technology and Business CAP Scholarship to honor outstanding African American scientists, technologists and inventors and to encourage and assist African American students with their professional development. Furthermore, the Phelps also chose to update the criteria of their existing Phelps Family CAP Scholarship Awards to include considerations for DACA and ASSET status students.  

  • Sue McCarroll Nursing Scholarship 

UNC alumnus Les McCarroll (MA, Rehabilitation Counseling ’70; Ed.D., Psychology, Counseling and Guidance ‘76) chose to honor the life and legacy of his late wife, Sue (’75, Nursing) by establishing the Sue McCarroll Nursing Scholarship to support undergraduate and graduate nursing students at UNC. This meaningful scholarship contains special considerations for students who demonstrate financial need and identify as Hispanic or Latinx.  

  • Michael Muskin Teacher Education Scholarship Endowment  

Planned gifts play a uniquely critical role in the future of the university and provide for the far-reaching impact of our work. UNC alumnus Michael Muskin ’76, ’85 recently chose to leave a legacy at UNC by establishing the Michael Muskin Teacher Education Scholarship Endowment which will be funded through Muskin’s estate, in addition to contributions throughout his lifetime. This special scholarship will support juniors and seniors in the School of Teacher Education and gives preference to students who identify as Black, Indigenous, or a Person of Color. Learn more about how to include UNC in your estate plans.

  • Anna D. Kerrigan Scholarship for Teacher Education  

UNC alumna Kathleen Kerrigan (BA, Home Economics ’73) recently established the Anna D. Kerrigan Scholarship for Teacher Education to honor her mother, Anna’s, memory. Anna’s resilience and determination as a single mother while attending college inspired Kerrigan to establish a unique scholarship that gives preference to a single-parent student, or a student from a single-parent household. This generous award provides a $10,000 annual scholarship to a Colorado resident in the School of Teacher Education who demonstrates financial need.  

UNC’s philanthropic efforts will continue to support the direction of the Rowing, Not Drifting 2030 Strategic Plan and our commitment to putting students, many of which hold diverse and intersecting identities, first.  

Students are encouraged to apply for the scholarships listed above, as well as other available scholarships through the UNC Foundation or one of UNC’s admission-based scholarships. Students can complete the application process through their Ursa account on the ‘Financial Aid’ tab. More information is available on the Office of Financial Aid’s website.  

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