University of Northern Iowa senior Bob Spielbauer is able to attend UNI for one reason: scholarships.
“I rely almost exclusively on scholarships to go to college,” said Spielbauer. “I was hired to work at the Rod Library the day I moved in as a freshman and have had multiple research jobs. These have helped me a lot, but scholarships and grants are the only reason I am able to afford college.”
Spielbauer has taken full advantage of the opportunity private support has provided him, as he is on schedule to graduate in four years as a triple major in earth science, environmental science and biology.
“I chose to major in science because I grew up very close to nature and have always been inspired by it,” Spielbauer said. “I have always wanted to better understand the world around me.”
His passion for science and nature, as well as his work ethic, began on his family’s dairy farm in Volga, Iowa.
“I wouldn’t change my childhood for anything because it made me the person that I am today,” said Spielbauer. “It made me hardworking, patient, and gave me an understanding of nature. It did, however, mean that I had to spend my evenings doing chores rather than joining clubs or sports. And, it also meant that I would have to support myself through college.”
One of six children, Spielbauer will attend the PhD program at the University of Florida after graduation to study Paleobotany. In addition, he will work in the Florida Museum of Natural History, focusing on the evolution of plants and their fossils.
Are you interested in helping students like Spielbauer have transformational experiences at UNI? Learn how you can make a difference by visiting uni-foundation.org.
“Scholarship donors help make the world a better place by helping people become more educated,” Spielbauer said. “More educated individuals lead to a more educated society, which can change the world. They are so important. Not just to me or the others who receive scholarships.”