Joel Wellnitz endows multi-faceted scholarship opportunities with quarter of a million dollar gift
January 18, 2024
Southeastern Oklahoma State University and the Southeastern Foundation are pleased to announce the creation of the Joel F. and Beverly Westheimer Wellnitz Scholarship Fund, which was started last week with an initial gift of $200,000 by Joel Wellnitz to establish the endowment.
Wellnitz graduated from Southeastern with his accounting degree in 1979 and was inspired to endow this fund by his late wife and the kindness of others who have contributed to the University to help students pursue their academic goals and dreams.
“As a student at Southeastern many years ago, I remember what it was like to struggle financially,” Wellnitz said. “It gives me great pleasure to know that I am helping deserving students reach their academic goals by reducing some of the financial burden they and their families face. It’s time for me to pay back some of the blessings I have received from Southeastern.”
This endowed fund will provide new scholarship opportunities for Southeastern students in Chemistry, Biology, Vocal Music Education, and Instrumental Music Education – programs which have held significance to the Wellnitz family over the years.
“Southeastern and the Foundation are so grateful to Joel Wellnitz for choosing to invest in the success of Southeastern students and continue the Southeastern Legacy,” said Mark Webb, director of alumni relations and University development. “When our alumni return to campus and show our current and prospective students how a Southeastern education can benefit them, it benefits the greater Southeastern legacy and continues our tradition of excellence.”
In addition to the initial gift to endow the scholarships, Wellnitz will provide direct funds over the next few years to start awarding scholarship funds to students in the Fall of 2024.
“One of the most beneficial ways that alumni and friends of Southeastern can positively impact students and the university is through scholarship gifts,” said Southeastern President Dr. Thomas W. Newsom. “The Joel F. and Beverly Westheimer Wellnitz Scholarship Fund will provide ongoing resources for future students’ success and solidify both their legacies, and the legacy of Joel and his family at Southeastern.”
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