Why your support matters
K.C. Lawrence, MSSW ’12, 2010 Sylvia Shapiro Scholarship recipient
K.C. Lawrence traded a budding business career for a social work degree and has never looked back.
“My dream was to combine my previous business experience with geriatric social work training and a nonprofit certificate to then obtain a position in a small nonprofit as a program director,” Lawrence said. “A few years ago, this dream came true when I started working at AGE of Central Texas.”
Lawrence is the program director of the nonprofit’s Memory Connections program. This is an early-memory-loss support program focused on enhancing the mental and physical health and overall quality of life of people affected by early-stage dementia.
“We do brain boosters, physical exercise, creative activities … they try new things and can talk to other people who are going through similar experiences,” Lawrence said. “Being with them at this moment of their journey with memory loss is a huge honor for me.”
The best and brightest
Tom and Sally Dunning Endowed Forty Acres Scholarship
“We began our journey with social workers over 40 years ago, when we were adopting our daughter. Social workers were wonderful and caring in assisting us from the first day. As a board member of the Texas Department of Human Services, I saw firsthand the positive impact they made on the lives of children and adults in Texas. Later, when I was the Homeless Czar of the City of Dallas, I worked closely with a wonderful social worker. More recently, I have seen the positive results of having social workers meet with the most disruptive students in both middle and high school.
“We truly believe that social workers are the glue that holds our society together, and hope that our scholarship will encourage the best and brightest high-school graduates to come to the Steve Hicks School of Social Work.”
– Tom Dunning
Education for all
Cynthia and Christina Franklin Endowed Fellowship in Solution Focused Brief Therapy
“As a first generation college student and someone whose dad could not read or write, I learned very early in life the importance of having an education. I have been in the faculty of the Steve Hicks School of Social Work for more than 25 years. I have witnessed the growth of the school and it just keeps getting better!
“My students and colleagues have given so much to me professionally and personally. It has been a blessing in my life and it has made me think how to give back. Steve Hicks’s matching challenge and the chance to stretch my dollars definitely prompted me to give sooner. I hope my gift will help students prepare themselves to practice and do research on Solution-Focused Brief Therapy. I have seen this therapy make positive change in the lives of so many at-risk students during my career that I want to contribute to pass this social work practice to the next generation.”
– Cynthia Franklin
One of our first graduates
Joe Jenkins Family Endowed Excellence Fund in Social Work
Joe Jenkins graduated with his Master of Social Work from UT Austin in 1952, only two years after the school had opened its doors. He has loved watching the school grow and thrive, and proudly displays in his home the award he received in 2000 as alumnus of the year. Joe returned to his hometown of Waxahachie after four decades of social work practice in the Chicago area. He joined the city council, ran for mayor, and was elected five times. He continues to do social work in every way he can.
“Social work was my life career. I am so proud to be one of the first class members. It was an exciting time in the profession, and I am proud I helped develop the standards of home care across the country. I give because I love the School of Social Work! I hope to help improve students’ careers and enhance their education.”
– Joe Jenkins
In memory of a son
Andrew Pickett Mobley MemorialEndowed Presidential Fellowship in Social Work
“Becoming a social worker has changed my life for the better in more ways than I can count. I am so proud to be a member of this profession, and I want to encourage others to choose this field.
“My husband John Scoffield and I wanted to endow a presidential fellowship in memory of my son, Andrew, as we know that he’d be very proud to be a part of supporting social workers in their desire to make the world a better place. Steve Hicks’s extremely generous matching gift will allow Andrew’s fellowship to double its impact on changing the lives of new social workers. We are so very grateful to him.”
– Holly Scoffield
A couple’s commitment
Patrick Hefferan MemorialEndowed Fellowship in Social Work
“I’ve used the course work and the values-based perspective from my graduate education in social work in each of the positions I held during forty years of employment — I’ve worked with Medicaid programs in Texas, Minnesota and North Carolina. My interest in public health care programs began in fact with my field assignment at the Austin Health Department.
“This endowment was a way to honor Patrick, and it continues his commitment to donate to educational programs and human service organizations. I hope that
the recipients will be able to attend graduate school without incurring much debt. I wanted to replace some of the federal and state scholarships that were available to my friends and me when we were in school, but that are no longer funded.”
– Anne Shotton
A son’s tribute
Luis A. and Mercedes Zayas Family Endowed Fellowship in Social Work
“The school now named after Mr. Steve Hicks represents opportunity. Opportunity for young people who would not have been able to afford their education and who now can obtain their Master of Social Work and pursue a life of helping others.
“With this endowment, I hope that young people who are the first generation in their families to attend college can also aspire to earn a Master of Social Work. I think I was a social worker from the earliest days that I can remember. I was always concerned with the vulnerable, those less fortunate than me, and those who are in some way victims of discrimination and marginalization. My parents always supported me and my interests, and I wanted to honor their memory by naming the endowment after them. My father, especially, always reminded me of how important a college education was. It is a tribute to him that I accomplished as much as I have.”
– Luis H. Zayas
A family legacy
Kerr Family Pay it Forward Endowed Scholarship in Social Work
“Social work and social workers have touched my life at critical times too personal to detail. But suffice to say that my life was changed in an incredibly positive way by the interaction with a person who helped me through trying times. “Forty years in financial services as CEO and working with clients have taught me that
relationship skills are the most important attribute for a business leader. The Steve Hicks School of Social Work is the finest place on the planet to learn relationship skills.
“Our hope is to help students in financial need and also bring social work values and skills into other career paths. Skills that social workers take for granted can make the difference between an average and an exceptional career as a business leader or a scientist. We also hope to expand the perspective of incoming students and help them look beyond traditional social work career paths.”
– Bruce Kerr
Training world-class social workers
Pamela A. Ackert Endowed Scholarship in Social Work
“The Steve Hicks School of Social Work is designed to train the very best professionals to help those who need it the most. Upon graduation, these young men and women will join schools and governmental organizations to help others. And, these same young men and women will grow to be the leaders of these organizations over time. With this scholarship, we hope to help a promising young student turn into a world-class social worker by reducing the cost of their tuition, which will relieve the financial burden on them when they graduate.”
– Pamela Ackert
“Not only does this scholarship help needy and deserving social work students, it also honors Steve [Hicks] and his family for their contribution.”
– George Ackert