The Dreher / Suczek Psychology Scholarship Award


The Dreher / Suczek Psychology Scholarship Award

If we are lucky in life, we might meet some mentors so powerful they can create our future. Usually these people come into our lives at that delicate, vulnerable time when we are leaving our family of origin and trying to make our way in the world.

Dr. Robert Dreher and Dr. Robert Suczek at San Francisco State University were such mentors to me. I created the Dreher / Suczek Scholarship to honor them.  Two psychology graduate students, Shannon Ferguson and Sofia Ortiz, are the winners of this 2019 – 2020 award. Each received $5,000 for this academic year.

On Tuesday, November 19, 2019 the College of Science and Engineering hosted a gala  award dinner to acknowledge student award winners, faculty, and donors. Shannon Ferguson and I joined the psychology table along with Chris Wright, chair of the department. Sofia Ortiz was unable to attend.

Shannon lives in Petaluma with her family. It is a long bus ride several times each week. After the dinner, I drove her to the Golden Gate Bridge where she caught the bus to Petaluma. As she got out of the car, she paused for a moment and I said,

Shannon, I hope you will remember this night. Please imagine your professional life, 30 years from now. Most likely you will have earned a PhD and will be doing research, and maybe teaching. I hope you will think back to this evening and the professors you never met, but whose scholarship helped you get through your graduate studies. You will be of help to many young students. You will be an inspiration to those students. Their futures will be, to some extent, shaped by you, and through me to those wonderful professors, Dr. Robert Dreher and Dr. Robert Suczek.

Shannon, you will make a huge difference to students not yet born.

We are all links in a chain. Good luck.



6 thoughts on “The Dreher / Suczek Psychology Scholarship Award

  1. Mary Warren says:

    This is a great way to ‘pay it forward’ so nicely done, Rick. I hope they find the personal and professional satisfaction in their chosen field that I did for 36 years!

  2. Ken French says:

    Rick, you have enriched me, and this season of Thanksgiving, by simply and beautifully describing this event and encounter. So many are the ways in which we are interconnected – in learning, becoming, living a conscious life. Thank you for all you do, and for providing a reminder of the deep gratitude we all carry within, and may even share outward with our world…

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