For Hill, Scholarships and Education 'Made All The Difference in the World'

Charles Hill
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Charles Hill

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – University of Arkansas students majoring in architecture, landscape architecture and interior design will have a new scholarship available to them, thanks to a gift from alumnus Charles Hill of Springfield, Missouri. The Charles C. Hill Jr. Endowed Scholarship in Architecture and Design was created with a $50,000 charitable gift annuity and will be initially awarded in the 2019-20 academic year.

The gift counts toward Campaign Arkansas, the university’s capital campaign focused on advancing academic opportunity.

Charles Hill was drawing bridges and buildings before he started school and always knew he wanted to be an architect or civil engineer. He also realized the University of Arkansas was the place that could give him that opportunity.

“I visited the campus and talked to people in both civil engineering and architecture,” he said. “I loved the campus, the atmosphere and the culture – both intellectually and socially.”

As a student in the then-Department of Architecture, Hill interacted with early founders and pioneers like John G. Williams, Cyrus Sutherland, Ernie Jacks, Herb Fowler and the school’s future namesake, Fay Jones.

“Their inspiration and direction really set my values and career path,” Hill said. “They’re the reason I wanted to get involved with the U of A. They were like family from the beginning.”

Hill earned a Bachelor of Architecture in 1973 and joined the firm Erhart, Eichenbaum, Rauch and Blass, which is now Gaskin Hill Norcross Architects and Engineers. Hill took a special interest in health care, higher education and city, county and state projects during his career and became licensed in six states.

Hill was the first in his immediate family to earn a baccalaureate degree and said scholarships played a role in that achievement.

“I could not have gone to the U of A without scholarships,” he said. “It made all the difference in the world for me to complete my education. Making a gift was my opportunity to give back.”

The Charles C. Hill Jr. Endowed Scholarship in Architecture and Design will be awarded on a rotational basis to students majoring in architecture, landscape architecture and interior design. Preference will be given to students who are graduates of high schools in Missouri or Arkansas. Recipients must be entering their third, fourth or fifth year of the program and demonstrate financial need. Transfer students, traditional and non-traditional students will all be eligible.

Hill’s $50,000 gift through a charitable gift annuity will create the endowment for the scholarship, and Hill is making additional annual gifts so the scholarship can be awarded starting with the 2019-20 academic year.

“Charles Hill exemplifies the best in a Fay Jones School alumnus,” said Peter MacKeith, dean of the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design. “He’s an accomplished practitioner, a recognized leader in his community and a loyal and wise counselor to the Jones School. This scholarship gift, while benefiting future generations of design students, is also a superb way to recognize the legacy of the school’s faculty, who were so important to Charles and are so important to the deeply held ethos of the school.”

Hill is active in the American Institute of Architects and is a past president of the Springfield, Missouri, chapter. He was also on the board of the Missouri Council of Architects, now the American Institute of Architects-Missouri, and served for eight years on the Missouri Board of Architects and Engineers, including four years as chair of the architectural division.

At the University of Arkansas, Hill is a past member of the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design Professional Advisory Board and is a member of the school’s Dean’s Circle. In addition to his new scholarship, he has also supported the John G. Williams Fellows Endowment Fund and the Ernie Jacks Endowment for Enhancement of Architectural Studies. He is a member of the Arkansas Alumni Association and is counted as a Thoroughred for his 11 years of consecutive giving to the U of A.

About Campaign Arkansas: Campaign Arkansas is the ongoing capital campaign for the University of Arkansas to raise private gift support for the university’s academic mission and other key priorities. The campaign’s goal is to raise $1.25 billion to support academic and need-based scholarships, technology enhancements, new and renovated facilities, undergraduate, graduate and faculty research, study abroad opportunities and other innovative programs. The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in a wide spectrum of disciplines as it works to fulfill its public land-grant mission to serve Arkansas and beyond as a partner, resource and catalyst.

About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among only 2.7 percent of universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.


Jennifer Holland, director of development communications
University Relations


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