Henderson State University has received nearly $450,000 from estate gifts to establish two significant scholarship endowments for history majors.
The Carrigan History Scholarship Endowment was established from a $257,000 bequest left by Jo Ann “Jody” Carrigan who earned her bachelor’s degree from Henderson in 1953. Carrigan, who passed away in September, spent much of her career in the Department of History at the University of Nebraska at Omaha.
At UNO, her specializations were in US urban history and medical and public health history. She retired from UNO in 1996. Carrigan served as a volunteer adjunct professor of medical history in the medical humanities program at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and continued to work with graduate students there until the time of her death.
She was an active historian with involvement in the Organization of American Historians, the Southern Historical Association and the Southern Association of Women Historians.
“Dr. Carrigan reached out a couple of years ago to begin the process of establishing her scholarship endowment because she wanted to leave a legacy at her alma mater, and we were delighted to assist her,” said Jennifer Boyett, Vice President for Advancement.
The Carrigan History Scholarship will provide $10,000 per year in scholarship support to high-achieving upperclassmen seeking a bachelor’s degree in history.
“Dr. Carrigan became a well-renowned scholar and a true leader in her field, publishing the definitive study of yellow fever in Louisiana history and serving at times as managing editor of Louisiana, on the advisory board of Southern Studies, and as president of the Southern Association for Women Historians,” said Dr. Angela Boswell, dean of Ellis College of Arts and Sciences. “She never forgot, however, that Henderson State made all this possible for her by giving her the opportunity to earn her degree and go on to graduate.
“She wanted to give back and make it possible for future history students to finish their degrees at her alma mater.”
The Michael Link History Scholarship Endowment was established from a $190,000 bequest from Michael Link who earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Henderson in 1962 and 1963, respectively. He was also a lineman for the Reddies football team.
Link, who passed away in April of 2016, spent more than 50 years teaching history at Arkansas Tech University where he also served as a student advisor. A master of the French, German, Latin and Bulgarian languages, Link was a member of the European Section of The Southern Historical Association.
The Michael Link History Scholarship will provide $7,500 annually in scholarship support to high-achieving seniors majoring in history.
Boswell said both endowments will enable many history students to finish their college degrees, enriching their lives, benefitting the state of Arkansas, and promoting the field of historical study.