On the evening of September 26, 2022, Southwestern Adventist University held its annual scholarship gala at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History. More than 200 friends, alumni, and supporters of the University gathered for the “Gala at the Museum” to make an investment in the education of Southwestern Adventist University students that, for many, will make graduation a reality.
The unique space offered the perfect place to highlight the University’s own science departments. Upon arrival, while guests enjoyed beverages and hors d’oeuvres, Dr. Jared Wood, standing at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History’s dinosaur exhibit, answered questions about Southwestern’s leading involvement in the field of paleontology and the collection of 40,000 dinosaur fossils on campus, one of the most extensive collections in the country. Down the hall, Drs. Erin Maloney and Arthur Schwarz met guests, introducing some of their students who shared their internship experiences and career aspirations in the field of biology. In front of the cosmic exhibit, Dr. Jared Rice, who earned his doctorate in astronomy, and Southwestern Adventist University Thompson Observatory’s Manager Jerry Becker greeted visitors and offered their knowledge of the heavens.
Southwestern Adventist University President Ana Patterson welcomed the University’s friends, alumni, and supporters and recognized faculty, staff, and students after everyone took their seats for dinner. Chairman of Southwestern Adventist University’s Board of Trustees, Carlos Craig, offered opening prayer and invited guests to enjoy their meal catered by Fort Worth’s acclaimed Reata Restaurant. During dinner, student musicians in “Quattro Archi,” under the direction of Assistant Professor Dr. Rogerio Nunes, performed for guests.
President Patterson resumed the program by inviting three scholarship recipients to share their stories and to express their sincerest thanks to donors. President Patterson also shared that she herself received a scholarship her senior year. “It was a scholarship applied to my bill that helped me to finish as well,” she told the audience. “That helps me put into perspective what these students are going through to try to finish their education. We all know that debt is real and that there are struggles, but we want our students not to have to worry about that. We want them to be able to focus on their studies and what they want to do with their lives in the future. That’s why we’re here, to try to support them.”
The rest of the program focused on Southwestern’s Dinosaur Museum and Research Center. During a special presentation, President Patterson invited Dr. Jared Wood on stage to recognize Mr. Vern Johnson and Mrs. Carolyn Hanson Johnson. For more than 25 years, the Johnsons have exclusively partnered with Southwestern Adventist University and allowed faculty and students to dig for dinosaur bones on their Wyoming ranch. President Patterson then gave special recognition to Dr. Arthur Chadwick, the one who forged this partnership with the Johnsons by offering a faith-based research approach to studying their collection and for sharing their contribution to the field of paleontology at large. President Patterson presented the first annual Dr. Arthur Chadwick Scientific Impact Award to Professor Emeritus Arthur Chadwick himself for excellence in paleontology, research, and education. The University will annually present other researchers with this award. The evening closed with Dr. Carlton Byrd, a Southwestern Adventist University’s Board of Trustees member, offering the benediction.
On behalf of the University, sincerest thanks goes to each sponsor of the event and all those individuals who gave personally to reach the $115K goal to benefit students and to help Southwestern Adventist University carry out its mission of inspiring knowledge, faith, and service through Christ-centered education.
- The Sensabaugh Family
- Southwestern Adventist University Board of Trustees
- Southwestern Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
- Texas Health Huguley Hospital Fort Worth South
- Civitas Senior Living
- Pinnacle Bank
- Texas Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
- Texico Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
- Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
- Dan and Shirleane Chadwick
- The Gil Valletta Family
- Todd and Melinda Goodman
- Oklahoma Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
- John and Tami Barroso
- Cleburne Ford
- The Mustang Foundation
- PAVLOV Advertising, LLC
- Tony and Bethany Seery
- Southwest Region Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
- Townview Realtors
Special thanks goes to:
- The Fort Worth Museum of History and Science
- Breck & Co. Floral for the beautiful table centerpieces