Scholarship Spotlight


Three decades ago, Robert and Patricia Naegele invited a few international students who were far from their homes to dinner. That invitation was the start of an exceptional and lasting relationship with Northwood University. The Naegeles’ early imprint deepened over the years and continues to support our students and educational mission today. Their dedication to students, from fulfilling academic dreams to providing everyday comforts, imbued their generosity with a personal and distinctive touch. Bob and Pat shared treasure in all forms, especially in the way they gave their time and wisdom to students one-on-one. As Pat Naegele said in a 2005 interview, “Our love affair with Northwood began in getting to know students. We really felt as though we were able to have an impact on their lives.”

Their impact is far-reaching, even though Bob died in 2000 and Pat in 2015. The Naegeles’ commitment, now imparted through several scholarships, has enabled more than 60 students to pursue their Northwood educations by defraying tuition and other college expenses. The Naegele Scholarship for International Students and the Dr. Patricia Naegele Fashion Marketing/Management Endowed Scholarship are just two examples of the many scholarships that were funded during their lifetimes and additional scholarships recently created by Pat’s generous bequest.

scholarship_photo1For Alumni

Pavel Konecny (BBA ’96, MBA ’98) is thriving in his career as senior vice president and corporate treasurer at Chemical Bank in Midland, Mich. He enjoys being part of a corporation that helps fuel positive economic growth in communities throughout the state. His interest in learning and business began in the Czech Republic where he was born and raised. While a tennis scholarship brought him to Northwood, Bob and Pat Naegele helped make a new country and foreign culture feel more like home. He and his wife, Jana Chotivkova (’00), both credit the Naegeles for taking a personal and caring interest in them and supporting their academic dreams.

“Bob and Pat had an incredible impact on my life. They are one of the main reasons I am where I am today. Beyond the scholarship that allowed me to pursue my MBA, they gave me unconditional support as I began my life in the U.S. They listened, shared invaluable advice, and helped me navigate a business world that was completely foreign to me. They were like my parents away from home. The Naegeles’ tremendous generosity helped both me and my wife earn a world-class education without an undue financial burden.”

scholarship_photo2For the Recipients

Paige Podskalny, an East Jordan, Mich., junior majoring in Fashion Marketing and Management, knows that Northwood’s in-depth classes and experiences are giving her the skills needed for her career in the fashion industry. The two years of support she received from the Dr. Patricia Naegele Fashion Marketing/Management Endowed Scholarship have freed her financially to undertake tremendous learning opportunities like serving as the Style Vice Chair for the 2017 NU Style Show.

“I am incredibly grateful and honored that I received the scholarship. The remarkable support has made it possible for me to get an excellent education in a field that excites and motivates me. I’m so glad I chose Northwood. And as I’ve learned more about Dr. Patricia Naegele, I can see that we share a lot of the same qualities. I strive to excel, give to others, and be a contributing part of my community, just like she did.”

For Northwood

While they were alive, the Naegeles’ boundless generosity – of their time, wisdom, caring, and financial support – made the difference for hundreds of Northwood students. And they will continue to reach thousands more through the scholarships that carry their names. However, Bob and Pat’s enduring legacy is that, along with scholarship recipients like Pavel Konecny and Paige Podskalny, every individual who attends Northwood benefits from their student-centered, forward thinking philanthropy.

“We are blessed to honor Bob and Pat’s legacy by continuing to provide a focused educational environment where their scholarships can make a genuine difference in students’ lives,” said Justin Marshall, Vice President of Advancement and Alumni Relations. “The entire Northwood family misses them. But we are reminded daily of their influence through the smiles of scholarship recipients and the success of alumni who benefitted from their kindness and unique selflessness.”

Planned Giving 101

Planned gifts, which are often an important part of estate planning, provide significant support for Northwood and our students as we continue to develop leaders and entrepreneurs through a unique free-enterprise education. In addition, planned giving offers donors attractive advantages, such as increased financial flexibility, reduced tax burden, and even business succession plans. Northwood welcomes gifts through many different planned giving vehicles including these common ones:

BEQUESTS are one of the easiest donations to make. Legal advisors can help specify in a will that a gift be made to Northwood University as part of an estate plan.

CHARITABLE GIFT ANNUITIES feature a contract between donors and Northwood University agreeing to the transfer of property, assets, or cash to the University in exchange for a fixed income.

CHARITABLE IRA ROLLOVERS allow individuals age 70-1/2 or older to make gifts to Northwood directly from their IRA and benefit in the same year by excluding the donated amount (up to $100,000) from their gross income.

Are you interested in including Northwood University as part of your estate plan?

Contact Justin Marshall, Vice President of Advancement and Alumni Relations, 989-837-4279 or