In appreciation of the doctorate in educational leadership that she attained at PSU, Gayle Thieman, EdD ’00, associate professor in the GSE, has established two endowments as part of her estate planning. The first endowment will support research to promote education for democracy and civic engagement, and the second will provide financial assistance for prospective secondary classroom teachers. “One of my core values is to support family, and the GSE is part of my family,” says Dr. Thieman. “These endowments are a legacy of scholarship and an example of stewardship to my own children. Making a planned gift is something that anyone can do now; you don’t have to wait.”
Prior to joining the faculty at PSU, Dr. Thieman was a secondary social studies teacher and administrator. In 2007–08 she served as president of the National Council for the Social Studies. Social studies is her passion, and the endowed fellowship will support activities such as action research with teachers in social science education and civic engagement projects.
As an undergraduate student and full-time mother, Dr. Thieman realized first-hand the financial obstacles that teacher education students face. As a GSE scholarship application reader and GTEP cohort leader, she was struck by the overwhelming number of worthy candidates facing a lack of sufficient funds. She too had benefitted from scholarship assistance when she was in school, so supporting a scholarship is her way of paying it forward. She recognizes the importance of outstanding educators who can effectively teach the diverse population in today’s schools.
Dr. Thieman derives much pleasure from teaching the next generation of students and didn’t want to wait for the endowment to be fully funded in order to support students. She has begun her scholarship now through a payroll deduction plan. The Thieman Scholarship is intended to support teacher education candidates who have extensive multicultural experience. Preference for the scholarship is given to students who plan to teach in the social sciences.
“A small amount taken out of my paycheck regularly makes it easier to accumulate funds for the scholarship,” says Dr. Thieman. “It will be so much fun to watch the growth of the students I can help now.”
You too can help future generations. For more information or assistance on planned giving, or to set up a named scholarship, contact Sandy Wiscarson, 503-725-4789.