Larry Pawl '71View all stories
Larry Pawl established a scholarship to honor his parents and provide opportunity for nursing and pre-med students who are the first in their families to attend college, just as he was. The scholarship is named Eugene and Lillian Pawl, who did not graduate from college, but made sure their son did.
"My parents showed me the right way to do things; they instilled important values in me," said Pawl. "They always assumed I would go to college. They were very supportive."
His father worked on an assembly line at General Motors. His mother raised him and his sister, Teresa Pawl-Knapp, who graduated from Grand Valley in 1976.
Pawl wants others to consider creating scholarships too. "Our alumni are maturing to the point where they are successful enough to start thinking about doing a scholarship. A scholarship is the way to go; it's my kind of thing, one person helping another," he said.
Pawl, who specializes in oncology, was the first in his immediate family to earn a college degree. He graduated from Grand Valley in 1971 and has served as a GVU Foundation trustee and as the Alumni Association president. In 1991, he received the Distinguished Alumnus award. His wife, Brenda, received both Bachelor's and Master's degrees in nursing from Grand Valley.
Today, Pawl is a member of the Alumni Champions, a committee "of alumni, for alumni" that is leading the effort to involve the university's 72,000 graduates in Shaping Our Future.