The Phillips Family Endowed Scholarship was established at the University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana today by Dave and Judy Phillips of Emmet, Arkansas. Preference for the scholarship is given to a student pursuing a degree in Industrial Maintenance or Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning.
“We established this scholarship to recognize the educational accomplishments within our family,” Dave and Judy said. According to the couple, several family members have college degrees today, but that didn’t happen without challenges along the way. In fact, Judy was the first person in her family to graduate high school, and Dave’s father did not graduate high school.
“Our parents were very intelligent people, but they just did not have the financial help or people to advise them on how to find that help that is available today,” Judy said. “If our parents would have had help like this, there is no doubt they could have earned college degrees as well. We want to do our part to make financial help available to others who may be in the same situation.” Judy’s father went on to earn his GED, graduated from the police academy, and became a police officer. Dave’s father went on to start a successful electrical business.
The two were also the first members of their families to graduate college. Dave graduated from Troy State University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in electronics engineering and a master’s degree in public administration while serving as an active member of the United States Air Force. “A scholarship sure would have helped a starving airman at that time,” Dave said. While following Dave throughout his career in the Air Force, Judy bounced around to five different universities before completing a bachelor’s degree in studio arts from Henderson State University. “I often jokingly tell people that it took me forty years to finish my undergraduate degree, but in all seriousness, it would not have taken me near as long to finish if I had been able to receive scholarships to help pay along the way,” Judy said.
Dave and Judy’s accomplishment of graduating college set a standard for their family’s future. Their son graduated from the Community College of the Air Force and is now employed at Keesler Air Force Base. The couple’s daughter graduated from Henderson State University with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences with a Doctor of Medicine degree. “We know firsthand that the struggle to work and pay for college at the same time is real,” the couple stated. “Without scholarships to help our children along the way, it would have been much more difficult on them and us to earn college degrees.”
“It is generous donors like the Phillips’ that help UAHT continue to ensure that more students end up with success stories like Dave and Judy,” UAHT Chancellor, Dr. Christie Holt, said. “Many of our students are first-generation college students who need a little help and guidance. Scholarships such as this go a long way in helping them reach their educational goals.”
For more information about UAHT Foundation scholarships, call 870-722-8549.