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Dusenberry, RAD Board set sights on funding endowed scholarship

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Dusenberry, RAD Board set sights on funding endowed scholarship

RAD Board

The Recent Alumni Development (RAD) Board recently set a goal of raising $25,000 for an endowed scholarship. The board is seen here, alongside advancement officer Libby Burkhardt (front right). Second row, from left: Chelsea Smith, Tiffany Wheeler. Third row: Trenisha Tait, Sarah Tynes, Katie Lin, Cody Dailey. Fourth row: Joe Carlson, Drew Dusenberry, Patrick Earney, Stephen Singer.

Drew Dusenberry graduated from the MU College of Engineering in 2009 with a degree in chemical engineering. He went to work for Burns & McDonnell, joining several other Mizzou engineering grads who landed at the award-winning international engineering design firm, including Ray Kowalik and Bob Reymond.

Kowalik serves as president of Burns & McDonnell’s Energy Division. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in civil engineering in 1985 and 1999, respectively. Reymond, a 1987 graduate of mechanical and aerospace engineering, serves as a senior vice president with the company. Long-time supporters of the MU College of Engineering, the executives like to model the behavior for younger alumni at the company.

Dusenberry got involved with the college’s Recent Alumni Development (RAD) Board. He serves as the organization’s fundraising chair, which puts him front and center for the board’s effort to fund an endowed scholarship. Their goal is to raise $25,000.

“For the first several years of our board’s existence we conducted a ‘cold-call’ fundraising campaign,” Dusenberry said. “We tried emailing the young alumni, reached out to buddies we knew in school and brainstormed various fundraising activities.”

He said fundraising always is an uphill battle and being young alumni definitely adds many variables ones disposable income pool with student loans and new marriages, homes and families. The board decided to take a different approach.

“We said, ‘Give what you can. Every little bit counts and take advantage of any matching gift options that are available with your respective company,’” he said. “And that’s when we decided to stir up a little competition.

“Because we have such a great company match at Burns & McDonnell [anywhere from $50 to $250], we decided to use the company as the ‘guinea pig’ for starting successful campaigns at our workplace.

“We had a kick-off luncheon at Burns & Mac. Ray Kowalik and Bob Reymond said they would do a one-to-one match. For very $50 donated by young alumni, they would match with $50 out of their own pocket — up to $3000.” Dusenberry said. “Therefore, a $50 minimum donation would become a $200 donation when you take into account the Burns & McDonnell Foundation’s and Ray’s and Bob’s matches.”

The effort has been successful. The scholarship fund is nearly halfway to its goal.

“It’s never too early to get involved,” Dusenberry said. “Young alums can always give at a lower level and still make an impact. We hope the successful campaign at Burns & Mac will stir competition within the engineering community because when we compete, ultimately, Mizzou wins.”

To check the status of the scholarship fund, or to make a donation to take the group closer to its scholarship goal, visit: https://donatetomu.missouri.edu/givedirect/GDItem.aspx?item_id=47

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