Generations of Giving Back to IWU
Bob Field '67 has a long family connection to Illinois Wesleyan University that spreads over three generations, including his mother, an uncle and two of Bob and wife Jenny's three daughters.
Bob and Jenny met during their primary school years at church and began dating during college while Bob was at IWU.
"I began as a chemistry major with influence from Dr. Hess, but then graduated with a double major in philosophy and religion, which set me on a path to Garrett's Seminary at Northwestern," recalls Bob.
After spending five years with the Council of Churches ministering to young people who were struggling, Bob chose to attend law school. Eventually, Bob established his own firm and went on to have a substantial presence in the banking industry. Yet, no matter how busy they were, Bob and Jenny continued to prioritize social welfare by remaining active in community-based organizations that help others be themselves and find their way.
Not only has Bob given of his time to IWU as a Trustee, but the Fields have chosen to give to the University through many generous gifts over the years (e.g., the Myers Welcome Center, the Wesleyan Fund), a practice his uncle and aunt and parents began by endowing scholarships themselves-The Homer & Ruth Ann Field Scholarship and the Dr. Robert & Florence Field Scholarship, respectively
"As for my uncle and mother, IWU was their opportunity to have an education at the end of World War II, during which time they didn't have the means. However, through the generosity of IWU, they were both able to get a college education," Bob says. "The University has been central to our lives and the generations before us. It's a debt not measurable in dollars, but a gift of a lifetime...it's who you become. Illinois Wesleyan sets you on a lifelong path creating friendships and backgrounds of who we have become and who we are today."
And recently, the Bob and Jenny Field Endowed Scholarship was created. This scholarship is given to a student with a parent who has served his or her community and/or country and has difficulty providing his or her children with quality education.
Illinois Wesleyan is grateful to Bob, Jenny and their extended family for generations of giving back to an institution they hold so dear. And maybe, with grandchildren now in the family, the fourth generation will follow in Grandpa's footsteps to the IWU campus!