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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI Campbell Scholarship is a triple treat

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KINGSTON, R.I. -- May 18, 2006 -- Three students studying physics at the University of Rhode Island are taking different career paths. But they have one thing in common. They are some of the newest “Campbell Kids.”

Let us explain. When Bruce D. Campbell of Foster enrolled at URI, his father paid his room and board. To make ends meet, the young physics major worked summers. During the school year he worked as a floor sponsor in a residence hall. “I also got a small scholarship from the Lions and one from the Alumni Association,” says the 1962 alumnus.

He did graduate work at Brown University, postdoctoral work at Los Alamos Scientific Lab in New Mexico and was a staff physicist for IBM. Later he took the helm of Coto Wabash, a coil and relay company in Providence, which was named a “top business” in 1995.

That same year, he established an endowed scholarship at URI. Income from the endowment provides annual scholarships to physics students who show academic merit. “There comes a time to do something for URI,” says the grateful alumnus. In the ensuing years, the retired executive has added funds to the endowment.

This year, five “Campbell kids” received scholarships, three of whom received $1,000.

“The scholarship definitely helped cover my book expenses especially when the price of most science textbooks average around $120,” says Kelsey Druken who majored in physics and physical oceanography. The Newport native graduates this month and will enter the University’s famed Graduate School of Oceanography this fall.

“I’m from out-of-state and enrolled too late to receive a Centennial Scholarship or other financial aid, so this scholarship went directly into my pay for college fund,” says Tom Oggeri, of Massapequa Park, N.Y., who is completing his junior year. Recruited by the U.S Navy’s Nuclear Power Officer Candidate Program this year, Oggeri is heading to Officer Candidate School where, upon graduation, he will be commissioned an ensign. After more schooling, the recent URI alumnus will be a nuclear-trained officer aboard a submarine.

Jenna Head, who is just completing her junior year, double majors in physics and chemistry. This semester she worked as a research assistant in organic chemistry/medicinal chemistry. Like the two other $1,000 Campbell recipients, the Oakdale, Conn. native worked as a teaching assistant in the Physics Department. She also worked as a chemistry and physics tutor at URI’s Academic Enhancement Center.

“The Campbell Scholarship allowed me the freedom to choose jobs that would be beneficial to my learning experience instead of being tied down to a job that was academically unrelated. The time that I didn’t have to work has been positively reflected in my GPA and, more importantly, my outlook on school in general,” she says.

Pictured above
CAMPBELL AND KIDS: URI physics students Tom Oggeri, Kelsey Druken, and Jenna Head (standing l-r) all received scholarships from an endowment established by Bruce Campbell (seated). URI News Bureau photo by Nora Lewis.