It's come full circle for Ron Schmidt. The former UND football player (1966-69) wouldn't have ever made it to college without some help.
"I was the oldest of five children and our family was not well off financially," Schmidt said. "If it wasn't for the scholarships I received there is no way I could have attended UND."
When Fighting Sioux football made the move to Division I and scholarship support was critical, Schmidt answered the call, partially funding an Impact Scholarship for the football program.
"For me this was a no brainer," said Schmidt, a 1971 graduate from the College of Education & Human Development.
"It's former players like Ron stepping up to help out with Impact Scholarships that has allowed us to increase our numbers quickly and compete for the best high school football players in the region," head football coach Chris Mussman said. "Generating scholarship dollars is challenging, but the support of the Sioux football family has been critical."
Schmidt's giving isn't just through that annual scholarship either. This summer he and his wife Irene decided to "Leave a Legacy" at UND by establishing the Ron and Irene Schmidt Football Scholarship Endowment. This gift will be realized by an estate gift with the Schmidt's designating the UND Foundation as a beneficiary in their will.
"My business is financial planning and I do a lot of charitable planning work for my clients," Schmidt said. "There are numerous tax advantages connected with proper estate planning with charitable planning as a core for many people. I simply took my own advice. It is a great feeling to know that the legacy you have created does not die when you do!"
Schmidt has worked for Northwestern Mutual in the St. Cloud, Minn., area since 1972.
From a scholarship student-athlete in the late 60s to scholarship support of student-athletes for years to come.