From right, donor speaker Stephen Stockwell chats with the current recipient of the Stephen and Patricia Stockwell Swimming Scholarship, MaryKathryn Harris, and assistant swim coach Rory Coleman.

Feeding the Hen

Celebration of Scholarship-Athletics event honors donors, encourages students to give back

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4:31 p.m., April 23, 2013--University of Delaware President Patrick Harker was joined by Eric Ziady, director of athletics and recreation services, in hosting student-athletes and their benefactors for the second annual Celebration of Scholarship-Athletics reception.

The event allowed members of the University community to show their appreciation to those individuals and organizations who support undergraduate athletics through the creation and ongoing support of named scholarships.

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The evening is a favorite among students, coaches and donors alike, enabling supporters and scholarship recipients to meet in a casual setting to share food and conversation.

“This is a tremendous opportunity, not only for us to welcome back and thank those who have been so generous to us, but also to introduce and expose them to the true beneficiaries of their investment – our student-athletes,” said Ziady.

A short program began with remarks from both Harker and Ziady, and then shifted to three featured speakers -- two student-athletes and one donor.

Speaking on behalf of female athletes was sophomore biology major Chandler Bryant, a middle hitter on the volleyball team. Bryant is the inaugural recipient of the Darelle Lake Riabov and John Riabov Volleyball Scholarship, the University’s first endowed scholarship for volleyball. Male athletes were represented by sophomore university studies major Nick Boyle, a tight end on the football team and recipient of the Tubby Raymond Football Scholarship.

“Because of the generosity of donors, young athletes like me have the opportunity to grow and succeed in the sport they love while getting a quality education at the school they love,” said Bryant. “It’s so encouraging to know that there is another team of supporters beyond the coaches, trainers and parents that are there cheering us on and uplifting our spirits so that we are reminded that what we do is important and we are appreciated.”

The evening’s final speaker was Stephen Stockwell, who with his wife Patricia established the Stephen and Patricia Stockwell Swimming Scholarship. Both Stockwell and his wife graduated from UD in 1968 and have been loyal Blue Hen fans and supporters ever since. Stockwell is one of many donors who have the unique perspective of having first served as UD student-athletes. He credits the guidance he received from his UD swim coach, Harry Rawstrom, with having a tremendous impact on his life.

“As a swim coach, he made me a much better swimmer and a better athlete,” said Stockwell. “But more importantly Coach Rawstrom, as a life coach, made me a better person by focusing on several other aspects of my college life.” 

Stockwell credits Rawstrom with instilling in him the desire to give back by reminding him to, “never forget where you came from.” Stockwell urged current student-athletes to do the same. 

“Look around! Look at what has been given back to the University of Delaware. Look at what those who have given have helped create,” said Stockwell. “Our donors have helped keep the Hen financially strong, as well as to keep the athletic program in the forefront. This is Feeding the Hen.”

Stockwell continued, “I encourage you to join me in supporting those who have supported you and start giving now. Start now, start small, but start. Start Feeding the Hen.”

Article by Shannon Pote

Photos by Duane Perry

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