JOLIET, Ill. – The University of St. Francis, Joliet, Illinois, is a Catholic, Franciscan institution of higher education. The mission of the university is to promote learning and develop and enrich the whole person; educating the spirit as well as the mind to enable students to grow intellectually, personally, and spiritually. Through its academic programs and service learning opportunities, the university fosters responsibility, reverence for truth, a desire for excellence, knowledge of oneself and creation and a love for others.
Many students are supported in their studies by generous alumni and friends of the university who have left their legacy and/or memory behind through a scholarship. One such scholarship was recently established by Duane Walker (Darien, Ill.) in honor of his late wife and USF alumna MaryAnne (Krawchuck ‘70) Walker, who passed away in January 2012.
MaryAnne first met Duane while he was teaching a college math course at another institution. She graduated from USF, and while she pursued a master’s degree at the Illinois Institute of Technology, the couple pursued a relationship and fell deeply in love. They were married in 1972. She became a dedicated teacher who worked for 10 years at Jefferson Junior High School in Woodridge, Ill., followed by 25 years at Romeoville High School. In her role as an educator, she molded, shaped and influenced the lives of countless young people. Her other accomplishments include co-authoring two calculus textbooks in the late 1980s.
When she passed away, the couple’s close friend Dominic delivered the eulogy, saying, “MaryAnne inspired and affected the lives of thousands of students for over 30 years. As the consummate professional, she set an example for her colleagues and assumed the role of math department chair with integrity, and of course, class. MaryAnne did everything with class.
Duane Walker felt his late wife could continue to inspire and educate young people in spirit. A scholarship at her college alma mater, University of St. Francis, seemed like the perfect way to honor his wife and keep her memory alive in a meaningful way.
Said Walker, “MaryAnne loved to teach and cared about her students. The scholarship allows her to continue to help others even though she is not with us physically. Those who will the award should know that she was dedicated to teaching excellence and loved mathematics. The scholarships are the best way that I can think of to honor her life and continue her presence in the lives of others today and in the future.”
The MaryAnne Walker Memorial Scholarship will provide financial aid to young mathematicians at USF. USF juniors and seniors who are majoring in mathematics or education with a concentration in mathematics are eligible. One student will receive a $5,000 scholarship each year as long as he/she maintains GPA of 3.0 or higher.
Said USF’s Regina Block, “Duane’s decision to create the scholarship memorializes his beloved wife. It also provides an opportunity to assist a student who has a love for math and the desire to excel in the field. MaryAnne would be touched by this act of generosity.”
To learn more about this scholarship and others that have been funded in honor or memory of great alumni and friends of USF, visit the university’s advancement page at www.stfrancis.edu/support-usf/scholarships. There are presently nearly 70 opportunities for various students to receive aid through scholarships.
The University of St. Francis in Joliet serves 3,400 students nationwide, offering 44 undergraduate programs, four adult degree-completion programs, 18 graduate programs and two doctoral programs. Areas of study include arts and science, business, education, nursing and health care and social work. For information, call (800) 735-7500 or visit www.stfrancis.edu.