UCM President Charles Ambrose, right, meets with UCM alumnus Dave Steward. Photograph courtesy of the University of Central Missouri.

A $500,000 gift from Dave and Thelma Steward will establish a unique scholarship program in the Harmon College of Business and Professional Studies at the University of Central Missouri.  Click to hear KMZU’s Chelsea Wade talk with Dean Roger Best:

Roger Best

St. Louis business founder and UCM alum Dave Steward is donating the money for a scholars program in his name to provide full tuition assistance for up to five undergraduate students pursuing business degrees in computer information systems.

Best said the university is honored to have received such a generous donation.  “I think it speaks to the quality of the experience [Dave] had while he was here and in the program.  I think it also speaks to the continued quality of our programs as we go forward.”

The program will provide undergraduate students with an opportunity to interact with business leaders and attend professional conferences.  Steward Scholars will also experience a focused international internship or a chance to study-abroad.  The scholarships will be awarded next spring for enrollment in the fall of 2012.

“Our goal is to attract high-caliber students.  Students who will be future civic leaders.  We have four cornerstones for the program: civic engagement, culture and social awareness, leadership, and professional development or academic preparation.  We expect to attract our next generation of leaders into the program,” Best added.

Dave Steward started World Wide Technology in 1990. Since then, the company has grown into a global organization, employing more than 2,000 people.