October 9, Carlinville, IL — Milton Rice ’75 has provided an estate gift to Blackburn College’s capital campaign that will provide full-ride scholarships to future students from Tazewell County, Illinois. Rice and his wife, Beverly, both originally from Tazewell County, saw the gift to Blackburn as a way to support both the college and students from their home area.
“The affordable price and the uniqueness of Blackburn’s nationally known Work Program made it possible for me to go to college,” said Rice. “Without this opportunity I may not have received a degree. Now we have the chance to pave the way for a new generation of students from our part of the state.”
“Milton Rice is an excellent example of an alumnus who wants to create an opportunity for today’s students, mirroring the experience he received as a student,” noted Dr. John Comerford, Blackburn College President. “This type of payback is seen many times, as older alumni realize the value of their Blackburn experience and are able to provide support for current students with financial need.”
Rice graduated from Blackburn with a biology degree and enjoyed a career with the Illinois Department of Public Health. While at Blackburn, he worked in the kitchen and then as a bricklayer on the new construction crew, learning new skills and how to work on a team. Rice grew to appreciate the Work Program and his academic experience more through the years. He fondly remembers the teaching and guidance of Biology professors Dr. William Werner and Dr. Dilbagh Singh, both popular faculty members in the early 70’s.
Blackburn’s unique educational experience is the result of a challenging academic program and also the demands placed on students in the college’s Work Program. The Blackburn College Work Program is the only student-managed Work Program in the U.S. and provides real-world work experience in all areas of the college, as well as management and leadership opportunities.