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Engineering technology and management alumnus honors late wife with nursing scholarship

Marissa McDaid | Aug 16, 2019

Engineering technology and management alumnus honors late wife with nursing scholarship

Marissa McDaid | Aug 16, 2019

Ohio University alumnus Kyle Michalek, BSETM ’07, turned tragedy into hope when he announced a gift that will establish a $100,000 scholarship endowment in Ohio University’s School of Nursing in memory of his wife.

The Michalek family was devastated in February by the loss of Kyle’s wife Stephanie, BSBS ’07, who unexpectedly passed away giving birth to their son, Andrews. Although Andrews was born prematurely, he fully recovered. Kyle, who owns Michalek Brothers Racing with his brother Corey Michalek, BSVICO ’10, took a step back from his competitive hobby of racing nitromethane-fueled dragsters to focus on family.

But, on August 10, Michalek Brothers Racing hit the track again at the 41st Kelly Services Night Under Fire drag race. This time, the team was joined by College of Health Sciences and Professions Dean Randy Leite during the pre-race ceremony for a special announcement.

“The past several months have been some of the most challenging months of my life,” said Michalek, a graduate of the engineering technology and management program in the Russ College of Engineering and Technology, before the race. “Tonight though, is going to be a celebration. As I was thinking ‘How can I honor my wife?’ I came across a thought that really resonated with all the love, the support, the compassion and the caring that everyone has given both me, my son and my family.”

Michalek realized that the generosity from his friends and family during his time of need was something that Stephanie embodied daily, bringing comfort to strangers as a skilled nurse.  He presented Dean Leite with a commemorative check in front of a crowd of 40,000 people, establishing the Stephanie Andrews Michalek Memorial Nursing Scholarship.

“We are so appreciative of Kyle’s support for our nursing program,” said Dean Leite. “Stephanie’s legacy lives on, and we’re proud to be a part of that legacy. I assure you that for every year from now on, students will benefit from what you’ve done and from what Stephanie stood for.”

The Michalek Brothers Racing team was elated to celebrate Stephanie with a win over their rivals and off-the-track friends, Gutierrez Brothers Racing.

The OHIO Match has partnered with donors to maximize the impact of their gifts since 2013, and the broad program sunsetted June 30, 2019. However, because the OHIO Match had been expanded in January 2019 to include OHIO’s regional campuses and donor-specified programs, some new scholarship commitments will continue to be eligible for matching dollars through June 30, 2020. For more information about scholarships that are eligible for the OHIO Match, contact The Ohio University Foundation at (800)-592-3863 or