Family and friends honor Dr. Robert B. Hayes through a memorial scholarship

Dr. Robert B. Hayes was president of Marshall University from 1974 to 1983. A scholarship has been created by family and friends to honor him. This scholarship will benefit full-time, undergraduate students in the College of Education and Professional Development.

July 13, 2018

Family and friends of Dr. Robert B. Hayes, former president of Marshall University who served from 1974 to 1983, have established a memorial scholarship in his name. The scholarship will benefit full-time, undergraduate students in the College of Education and Professional Development.

The Hayes family formerly created the Ruth Harrison Hayes Memorial Scholarship in memory of their mother. This scholarship is now a $100,000 endowment for string students performing in the Marshall University Symphony Orchestra, with preference to music majors.

In a joint statement from the Hayes family, they said, “Marshall has been an important part of our lives since moving to Huntington when our father was named the dean of the College of Education in the 1960s and we became a part of the Herd family. We are all proud graduates of the university and appreciate the excellent education we received in our various fields which enabled us to have successful careers. Establishing scholarships in memory of both our parents, and in giving to the university in other areas, has allowed us to express our gratitude in a tangible way. Supporting Marshall is an investment in the future of not only the university, but the entire community as well. With our gifts, and those of other Marshall alumni, we support university development, new facilities and help insure that deserving students have the same opportunities we were afforded.”

His family said Hayes had an insatiable desire to learn and to share knowledge with others, and the advice he gave to his students was the same advice he gave to his sons and daughter.

“It wasn’t merely advice for how to succeed in school, but, more importantly, it was guidance for how to succeed in life. Love God and others; be honest; treat everyone with kindness, respect and dignity; don’t be afraid to ask for help; show up early and stay late; do more than is required; and always give your best. Although these principles are important, his best advice came not from the words. As his children, it is our hope that this scholarship, established in his memory for West Virginia students pursuing careers in education, will allow his love for learning to be passed down for generations to come. We can think of no better legacy for him than that future classrooms are led by Marshall graduates who have a thirst for knowledge and a passion to share it with students in their care.”

Those who wish to contribute to the Dr. Robert B. Hayes Memorial Scholarship may do so by mailing a check to the Marshall University Foundation Inc. with the scholarship name in the memo line, or by visiting