Shaping Technology's Future
David Steward's gift pays it forward
Applicants must meet specific criteria that include being a declared computer information systems major and must agree to participate in a study-abroad program or international internship. Preference will be given to students of diversity and graduates of Clinton High School in Henry County, Mo., where Steward graduated. The scholarships will be awarded next spring with the first class expected to be enrolled for fall 2012.
"David's and Thelma's gift allows our next generation of leaders to leave UCM with unique and transformational experiences in civic engagement, social and cultural awareness, and leadership," said Roger Best, dean of the Harmon College. "Their support is a testament to the impact Central Missouri had on Dave personally and is evidence of the quality business education we provide."
Steward, an emeriti member of the UCM Foundation Board of Directors, received the UCM Alumni Association's Distinguished Alumni Award in 2004. In 2008, he received the National Urban League's Business Pioneer Award, as well as the St. Louis County Economic Council Dr. William D. Phillips Technology Award.
Before founding World Wide Technology in 1990, Steward held various positions with Wagner Electric, Missouri Pacific Railroad and Federal Express Corporation. A leading systems integrator providing technology products, services and supply chain solutions to the commercial, government and telecom sectors, WWT has grown into a global organization, with annual revenues exceeding $4 billion. It employs more than 2,000 employees and operates more than 2.5 million square feet of warehousing, distribution and integration space in 30 facilities throughout the world.
Thelma is a St. Louis native and graduate of the St. Louis Municipal School of Nursing. Her commitment to infant health care began as a registered nurse in Homer G. Phillips Hospital's newborn and premature nursery and has grown to focus on enhancing the larger community and contributing to a higher quality of life for all St. Louis citizens through active volunteerism. She recently was honored as Variety Children's Charity 2012 Woman of the Year.
"Dave Steward represents what is truly unique about the University of Central Missouri and he is actively engaged in helping shape the outcomes for what is required of us in the future," Ambrose said. "Future Steward Scholars will not only be prepared for change, I believe they will be instrumental in defining what change will be in the future. These scholars will define, create and lead change, all because of the cumulative effect of the UCM experience and the generosity of someone who himself benefited from his own experiences here in this community."