“I grew up during the Depression,” says Duane Schroeder ’56, “I was just happy to be able to attend college.”
Duane doesn’t remember student loans being available at that time, but he did receive a full-ride scholarship. He says, “I felt so blessed to receive a scholarship. I only had to pay a fee of $70 a quarter. I also worked various jobs on campus, and that is what got me through school.”
Duane and Marilyn Schroeder
Duane has fond memories of his education at Iowa State Teachers College. He says everyone on campus knew everybody and everyone helped where they could. Duane was awarded with the Purple Key for his service in the Men’s Union and for his high academic achievement.
After earning his college degree, Duane joined the service and later met his wife, Marilyn, when she was working at Northwestern Bell Telephone Company in Omaha. They have been married 40 years.
All through the years, Duane wanted to do something to pay back his alma mater. He found the answer in charitable gift annuities. Duane and Marilyn established two charitable gift annuities. Both will support the Class of 1956 Scholarship Endowment Fund. Duane says, “This way I can help students and Marilyn and I receive an income, too.”
The couple’s dream of living off the land and the lake came true when Duane retired from the lumber industry. He says, “We lived six months in Minnesota at our cabin and six months at our home in Arkansas for a lot of years. Now we stay in Arkansas all year.”
Today life is full of children, grandchildren and volunteering at the hospital and church. Duane also supports nature/environmental organizations. He says, “I have been so blessed. I just want to give back and to take care of my family.”
Thank you, Duane and Marilyn, for turning UNI students’ dreams into reality.