New David Livingston White Endowment Honors Student Perseverance
The SALT Center recently received a $100,000 endowment in memory of David Livingston White. This endowment will be used to support the SALT Center, as well as gift a class ring to one graduating senior each year.
David Livingston White, UA Class of 2011
David Livingston White graduated from the UA in 2011 at the age of 73. He had been battling cancer for roughly 20 years, but he persevered in order to earn his degree. His brother, Travis, purchased a class ring for him in order to commemorate this momentous accomplishment. Upon David’s passing, Travis selected the SALT Center to be one of the beneficiaries of David’s estate. He established an endowment in David’s name through the UA Foundation and asked that a portion of the funds be used to purchase a class ring for one graduating student who has demonstrated exceptional perseverance each year. Additionally, David’s class ring will be displayed in a shadowbox installation at the SALT Center.
We are honored that David's family selected the SALT Center to receive this generous gift. David’s legacy of perseverance resonates deeply with our team and our students, and will serve as an inspiration for genearations to come.
Timothy Supplitt: 2017 David Livingston White Class Ring Recipient
The first recipient of this distinguished gift is Timothy Supplitt. Timothy has been affiliated with The SALT Center since 2009, and was nominated by his Strategic Learning Specialist, Caroline Ragano.
Timothy struggled during his first year at the UA. His GPA was much lower than he wanted it to be, so he took some time off and came back with a renewed dedication to his academics, eventually completing his undergraduate coursework with a 3.2 GPA. As a graduate student, Timothy maintained a 3.9 GPA while taking a full course load.
When he first came to the UA, the most challenging thing for Timothy was socializing and joining campus clubs. It was very hard to make connections his freshman year. When he returned to campus, he joined the Tucson Animation Screening Society (TASS), the largest and longest-running Japanese Animation screening group in Arizona. They keep members up to date on the latest releases, and hold weekly screenings during the semester. Timothy eventually held various offices in the club, including Club President.
Academically, Timothy overcame his first-year struggles and excelled. He studied abroad in Japan, and returned periodically as a graduate student to complete his thesis research. His work focused on the differences between accommodations and treatment of individuals participating in Disability Athletics in Japan and the US. His thesis will soon be available at the UA library.
Timothy credits his success to many factors: his belief that anyone can succeed and achieve great things despite the obstacles they face, his gap years, which allowed him to grow and challenge himself while succeeding in the workforce, and his parents, whom he feels could not have been more encouraging as they were both uniquely qualified to give him the specialized support he needed. Finally, he credits the SALT Center for helping him overcome many difficulties and achieve outstanding academic success.
For Timothy, this class ring symbolizes a successful completion to his academic career: “It's a memento to show that I graduated. Something I can look back to and see that I did it, despite what others told me in the past - I graduated with a master's degree. That my journey was worth it.”
As Timothy looks to the future, he plans to find a job that will allow him to use his degree in East Asian Studies, as well as his ability to relate multi-culturally to others. Currently, he is exploring the position of Study Abroad Coordinator, which helps international students adjust to life as a college student in the US. He’s also interested in a job with a global company, like Walt Disney, where he could support the required communication and onboarding processes designed for the many workers they employ around the world.
Timothy offers these words of encouragement to others with learning differences: “Keep pushing forward. It will be difficult and you will falter because you are challenging a system that was designed to be against you. Find the right support, use it to its fullest. Leverage it for your success, you and it are not a lost cause.”
We are proud to honor Timothy with the first David Livingston White Class Ring. He certainly embodies the persevering spirit of its namesake, and we are excited to see all the future holds for him as a UA and SALT Center Alumnus.
Become a part of our legacy.
The SALT Center is a fee-based non-profit serving UA students who learn differently. We strive to balance our fiscal needs with fee rates and scholarships that make our services accessible. We also rely on the support of generous friends who want to see our students and our program succeed. Click here to learn more about giving opportunities that you can become a part of.
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