Opal Adams creates Mackay scholarship

Opal AdamsBy Joanna Trieger

Opal Adams '85 M.S. (geology), a University Foundation trustee and a member of the Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering Advisory Board, has created the Opal F. Adams Scholarship Endowment to assist Mackay students. In addition to a personal gift, the endowment was funded by the proceeds from an exhibit of Adams' original photography.

Adams began her career as an exploration geologist before starting the graduate program at the Mackay School. She remembers her time at Mackay fondly and particularly credits the late Professor Emeritus Larry Larson as a motivating force. "He was an excellent professor and had an amazing sense of humor," Adams says. "He knew how to support his students."

In 2000, Adams cofounded the environmental permitting firm Enviroscientists. While at the company, the students she hired from the Mackay School impressed her and ultimately inspired her to give back.
"I hope to ease the financial burden on students and to create an environment where studying can be the main focus in getting a degree, rather than having to work an excessive amount," she says. "I also hope to encourage students to eventually give back and pay forward."

Of Adams' decision to create a scholarship, Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations John Carothers says: "This is yet another way that Opal has demonstrated her leadership and generosity in the community. As an engaged alumna, a Foundation trustee and a business leader, she has created countless opportunities for those starting out in her field. We are grateful for her continued support of our students."

Photo: University Foundation Trustee and Mackay Advisory Board Member Opal Adams '85 M.S. has created an endowed scholarship for students in the Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering. Photo by Theresa Danna-Douglas

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To learn more about supporting the College of Science, please contact Donna Knotek, director of development, at (775) 682-5952.