Educators establish scholarship for science students

Mary (right) and Steve Beckelhimer have established a scholarship program for undergraduate and graduate students in science education.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Steve and Mary Beckelhimer, both of whom are public school educators and Marshall University alumni, have established science education scholarships for Marshall students.

Steve Beckelhimer is a lifelong science educator and Mary Beckelhimer is the director of technology with the Putnam County Schools in West Virginia.

“As lifelong educators, Mary and I recognize the importance of an education in the success of young people,” Steve Beckelhimer said. “There are many distractions in life that can interfere with completing a degree.  As with everything else, the cost of tuition, books and fees continues to increase.  We hope that our donations can help worthy students by easing some of that financial burden. Like most of the country, our area has a critical shortage of teachers in high-demand areas such as science.”

The undergraduate scholarship provides support to students who are pursuing degrees in Marshall’s College of Education and Professional Development and careers in science education. The graduate scholarship is for practicing science educators, so that they can engage in research and coursework leading to a graduate degree from the College of Science.

“We ask family and friends to contribute to our scholarships in lieu of gifts,” Mary Beckelhimer said. “Seeing Marshall University produce more and better science teachers using our scholarships is a wonderful gift for us.  It would be great if more teachers could start scholarships, perhaps little by little, that will pipeline more students into in-demand teaching fields. The beneficiaries of these gifts are not only the Marshall University students who receive the scholarships but every student that the future teachers ultimately influence.”

“College can be a scary place for newly arriving students,” Steve Beckelhimer said.  “A challenge is to channel that anxiety to high performance and progress toward targeted goals … No student ever believes the old adage that the college years are the best of your life, but it can be true if you take the steps to assure that you are successful and happy by working hard toward graduating on time.”

For further information on this and other scholarships at Marshall, contact Krystle Davis at the Marshall University Foundation by phone at 304-696-6781 or by e-mail at nichols50@marshall.edu.