Valparaiso University alumni Judith “Judy” Rockett ’60 Beumer and Richard “Dick” Beumer ’59 have committed $1 million to establish endowed funds in support of the University Writing Center and the College of Engineering. The gift will be equally divided between the Judith L. Beumer Endowed Writing Program Fund and the Beumer College of Engineering Fund.

To honor the donors, the University Writing Center, located on the first floor of the Christopher Center for Library and Information Resources, will be named the Judith L. Beumer Writing Center. The center offers peer consultations, workshops, assistance with writing assignments, and other programs and services to help each Valpo student develop this important communication tool and grow as a writer.

“The ability to present their thoughts and ideas in writing is essential for Valpo students to succeed in the classroom and, after graduating, in the workplace,” Judy Beumer said. “Dick and I are blessed to be able to establish an endowed fund in support of the Writing Center. We hope that the permanent source of funds will allow the program to help even more students strengthen their writing skills.”

Judy Beumer earned a bachelor of science in English and sociology and Dick Beumer earned his bachelor of science in electrical engineering from Valparaiso University. Dick is an emeritus member of the University Board of Directors, serving from 1990 to 2016. He received the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1982 and was inducted into the Athletics Hall of Fame in 2000. Judy is a member of the University Guild and formerly served on the Alumni Association Board.

“Valparaiso University and the College of Engineering prepared me for a professional career that I could not have imagined was possible,” Dick Beumer said. “I hope that our support has the same impact on future students. If so, this is a wonderful investment.”

The College of Engineering was recently ranked 13th nationally among bachelor’s and master’s engineering programs by U.S. News & World Report 2017 Best Colleges. The College offers undergraduate degree programs in civil, computer, electrical, mechanical and bioengineering in a learning environment that stresses interaction between faculty and students.

“Judy and Dick Beumer’s support of Valpo aligns with the passion they hold for these two programs, and we are extremely thankful for their generosity,” said Mark A. Heckler, Ph.D., president of Valparaiso University. “As an English major, Judy knows the importance of literacy, language and communication in all that we do. We are honored that the Writing Center will carry her name. Dick’s service to the University extends well past the 26 years he served on the Board. The endowed funds they have established will ensure they have a positive impact on the University in perpetuity.”

The Judith L. Beumer Endowed Writing Program Fund and the Beumer College of Engineering Fund support Forever Valpo: The Campaign for Our Future, a $250 million endowment campaign focused on raising permanent support for student scholarships, faculty development and programs that prepare students for lives of leadership and service. The Campaign was officially launched on Sept. 23, 2016, and has raised more than $152 million.