Carroll University has received $5.5 million - the single largest gift in the school’s history - from the estate of alumnus Bill Yersin, Class of 1963.
A portion of the gift will be used to establish two new scholarships, support an existing scholarship and to create an endowed faculty position. The balance of the money given by Yersin, who earned a bachelor of science degree in business administration, may be used without restrictions.
“This incredibly generous gift from Bill not only will support future students, but provides us the flexibility to prioritize funds for our new strategic plan,” said Carroll University President Cindy Gnadinger.
The new scholarships will bear Yersin’s name. They are the William B. Yersin Full Tuition Endowed Scholarship Fund, which will provide four-year tuition scholarships for business students attending Carroll University, and a non-endowed fund to support Yersin Business Scholars. Another portion of the bequest will be used for the Adolph G. Yersin Full Tuition Endowed Scholarship Fund, which was established in the name of Yersin’s father by Bill Yersin and his mother, Mary Yersin, in 2006.
Stephen Kuhn, vice president for institutional advancement, said Yersin had been actively involved with Carroll University for many years. “Bill really cared about our students. He thoroughly enjoyed meeting them, and it gave him great joy. He visited campus at least once a year to meet with his scholarship recipients. He loved Carroll.”
Yersin, who passed away in October 2017 at age 76, attended public schools in Milwaukee and West Allis before attending what was then known as Carroll College. While at Carroll, he earned a varsity letter in wrestling and was a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon and Alpha Kappa Psi fraternities.
Yersin was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force in September 1963 with active duty assignments that included Bedford Air Force Station in Virginia, Lackland Air Force Base in Texas, Clark Air Base in the Philippines and Lowry Air Force Base in Colorado. He retired from the Air Force Reserve in 1984 as a lieutenant colonel and then was employed as a civil servant at Lowry until he retired in 1996. Yersin was a resident of Aurora, Colo.