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Russ College alumnus and wife create scholarship recognizing Russ Professor of civil engineering

Colleen Carow | Oct 14, 2019
Dickerson Sargand Scholarship

Russ College alumnus and wife create scholarship recognizing Russ Professor of civil engineering

Colleen Carow | Oct 14, 2019

Ohio University Foundation Trustee Dick Dickerson, BSCE ’80, and his wife, Joan, have committed to a charitable gift to create the Dr. Shad Sargand Russ Vision Engineering Scholarship. The scholarship endowment will double thanks to two matches from The Ohio Match™ Program and from the Russ College of Engineering and Technology.

Dickerson, a professional engineer who founded his own pipeline design and management firm, Utility Technologies International, in 1994, said that Ohio University is directly responsible for his success in engineering and business.

“This is just a small way of helping someone else come to OHIO and have a positive impact on society,” said Dickerson, who serves on The Ohio University Foundation Board of Trustees, Russ College Board of Visitors, and Department of Civil Engineering advisory board. “Dr. Sargand was not here when I was a student, but he reminds me of the important educators in my life, so I wanted to honor him by naming this scholarship for him.”

Dickerson shared that he was overwhelmed when he ventured to Athens for college from a small, hillside Appalachian farm. He thought no one cared whether or not he succeeded.

“What I learned was that there were several people that cared,” he said. “My freshman year, Dr. Nick Dinos was my adviser, and his encouragement was key to my decision to keep toughing it out. Later, it was Dr. Glen Hazen and Chair of the Department of Civil Engineering Dr. Rueben Olsen. They cared about me and helped me succeed,” Dickerson added. 

Sargand -- a Russ Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering, and Vice Director for Business Development of the Ohio Research Institute for Transportation and the Environment -- called Dickerson an accomplished and smart businessman who is also a champion of OHIO.

"Dick Dickerson has enjoyed extraordinary success in business.  He is very devoted to Ohio University, the Russ College, and the Department of Civil Engineering,” Sargand said. “From his own experiences as a student, he knows that one ingredient in attracting and retaining high quality students in the program is to continuously motivate faculty to perform at the highest level.”

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 giving@ohio.edu.