NOTE TO EDITORS, NEWS DIRECTORS: A print-quality photo from
the event is available for download by clicking on the Half Century Club link
-- Members of the Half Century Club surprised the president of Fort Hays State
University today by awarding a newly created scholarship that was named in his
Dr. Edward H. Hammond Scholarship was presented to Braden Dreiling, Hays sophomore, at today's spring reception
of the Half Century Club in the Robbins Center on the FHSU campus.
frequently emphasizes that every decision he makes at the university must first
address a basic question: What is best for our students?
better represents Dr. Hammond's legacy than a scholarship fund that will
provide what has been of primary importance to him throughout his 25 years of
outstanding leadership at FHSU -- educational opportunities and a promising
future for generations of deserving students," said Leo Lake, Half Century
Club president. "We wanted to recognize Dr. Hammond's commitment to the
university, and it is our hope that others will now contribute to further
enhance the fund for distribution of future scholarships."
scholarship was two-fold. Lake presented a check for $2,500 to Dreiling,
pointing out that it represented $100 for each of President Hammond's 25 years
at FHSU. Then he presented a check for $10,000 to the president, which
establishes an endowed fund at the FHSU Foundation to pay for the Dr. Edward H.
Hammond Scholarship in years to come.
had no idea this was coming," Dreiling said. "I appreciate everything
President Hammond has done for this university."
Hammond also admitted that the new scholarship had taken him by surprise.
"You couldn't have picked a better student leader on campus," the
president said of Dreiling, adding that his name reminded him of another
Dreiling, Norbert, who was on the search committee 25 years ago. He said the
elder Dreiling had asked him to name his idol. Having researched the members of
the search committee and knowing of Dreiling's background in the Democratic
Party, Dr. Hammond named a young Democratic senator from Indiana who he
admired. Subsequently, he was selected to be president of FHSU.
do your homework, and you will be successful," President Hammond advised.
Half Century Club comprises alumni who have celebrated 50 years as a graduate
of the university. FHSU established the club through the Alumni Association in
October 1969 as a way of telling graduates: "You are important to us. You
are part of our past, and you play an important role in our present and
future." Now, 42 years later, the club has grown to 2,532 members. Graduates
of the 50-year class are inducted formally during the annual Homecoming
meeting. In addition, FHSU faculty and staff become members upon retirement.
The university community -- faculty, staff, students,
alumni, donors and friends -- celebrated Dr. Hammond's completion of his 25th year
as president with a party on the Quad on April 20. Likewise, members of the
Half Century Club have been working for nearly a year to honor the president by
surprising him with the scholarship created in his name. By happy coincidence,
the surprise announcement of the namesake scholarship also doubled as another
kind of gift -- today is the president's birthday!
alumni group better personifies the history and legacy of the university than
the Half Century Club," said Debra Prideaux, FHSU executive alumni
director. "Time and time again, unconditionally, they have given of
themselves to further Fort Hays State University's mission, which is evident by
this generous gift in honor of Dr. Edward Hammond. It is the Alumni
Association’s honor to work with such a dedicated and outstanding group of
purpose of the scholarship is to honor Dr. Hammond and to provide financial
assistance to students enrolled at FHSU. Funds to support the new scholarship
were made possible through donations from the Half Century Club. The fund is
considered an open-ended account, which means that additional contributions may
be made in the future by FHSU alumni and friends.
The scholarship will be held in a permanent account with the FHSU Foundation.
The annual available earnings from the principal will be the basis for the annual
awards. All future contributions to this endowed fund will be added to the cash
balance of this account, unless otherwise designated by the donor.
"With hard work and
dedication, this fund in honor of Dr. Hammond is now endowed," said Tim
Chapman, president and CEO of the FHSU Foundation. "Others can contribute to the fund at any time. Future gifts
can be designated to be invested in the principal of the fund or to be
expendable as part of the annual awards. There is no question when the news is
released that the Half Century Club established this fund in honor of Dr.
Hammond that others will follow the club's lead in wanting to honor our
president with additional support for the Hammond Scholarship."
the first recipient of the scholarship, was selected by the Half Century Club
Executive Council to receive the one-time $2,500 scholarship to further his
education at FHSU. Dreiling is a political science major with an economics
minor and a nearly perfect grade point average. He plans a career in law or
politics. In addition to his
academic performance, he has distinguished himself in extracurricular
activities. He studied abroad at Sias International University in Xinzheng,
China, attended the National Center for Student Leadership in Miami, currently
serves as a senator in the Student Government Association and has volunteered
for various community projects, including Big Brothers Big Sisters, Kids Vote
and Special Olympics. Also, he is currently serving as student liaison under
the director of state governmental relations for FHSU.
recipients of the Dr. Edward H. Hammond Scholarship must be a junior or senior
enrolled at FHSU with a minimum GPA of 3.5, be considered in need of financial
support and display strong leadership skills and campus involvement. If other
criteria for applicants are equal, primary consideration or preference will be
given to the descendant of a Half Century Club member. Selection shall be made
in the spring of each year for awarding in the following fall.