Robert Rajic ’19
Robert Rajic ’19 is a recipient of the 2018-2019 NURSE Corps Scholarship
The NURSE Corps Scholarship is a highly competitive program administered by the federal government’s Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). Each year, HRSA awards only 225 scholarships nationally.
Rajic, a refugee from Croatia, developed a passion for helping others during his childhood. He was actively involved in fundraising for St. Martin De Porres church and participated in the PeaceBuilders Program throughout high school on Chicago’s South Side. In addition to serving as president of Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity, Rajic regularly volunteers his time and fundraising efforts to philanthropic organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, Feeding America, St. Baldrick’s Foundation and Waypoint.
“I was encouraged to visit Coe by a school counselor,” said Rajic. “I felt an instant connection when I toured the campus. My mom also loved it so I knew it was the place for me. I’ve never had anyone on campus tell me to rethink my goals. All my professors want me to thrive.”
Rajic’s scholarship will pay for his fourth and final year at Coe. Within nine months of graduation, he will serve a two-year term working in a critical shortage facility.
“This is the perfect opportunity for me to make an impact with those in need such as immigrants and refugees,” said Rajic. “I’d like to thank all of my professors for being such a big part in my success at Coe. I wouldn't have been able to do it without all of their support.”
Rajic dreams of becoming a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) and specializing in family or acute medicine. He’s even considered becoming a nursing professor as there are remarkably few men in this profession.
“Coe’s nursing program has been phenomenal. It’s eye-opening and rigorous,” said Rajic, who has completed clinical sessions at both Mercy and UnityPoint hospitals in Cedar Rapids. “I’m convinced that Coe has the best nursing program in the nation.”
Henry and Patricia Tippie
Henry and Patricia Tippie to receive Outstanding Individual Philanthropist Award
Henry and Patricia Tippie are known around eastern Iowa for their generous support of education. Coe has been fortunate enough to benefit from their generosity, and when the opportunity arose to honor them for their contributions, the college did not hesitate to do so. Along with the University of Iowa Center for Advancement and the Kirkwood Foundation, Coe nominated Henry and Patricia for the Outstanding Individual Philanthropist Award through the Eastern Iowa Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.
A native of Belle Plaine, Iowa, Henry Tippie’s connection to Coe began in June of 1944 when he enlisted in the Army Specialized Training Reserve Program at age 17. He received his initial military training and introductory college coursework on campus, bunking with about 200 other cadets in the basement of Eby Fieldhouse. This experience played a significant role in Henry’s life. He felt that the program, along with the G.I. Bill, gave participants the opportunity to go on to greater things in life than they could have otherwise.
Following his military service, Henry went on to earn his degree in accounting from the University of Iowa and built a career as an innovative businessman. Although he is now decades removed from his time at Coe, Henry still remembers the college and his fellow cadets fondly. He was instrumental in bringing the group together for a reunion in 2010, and a plaque has been installed in the Athletics and Recreation Complex to commemorate their service to our country.
Henry’s involvement with Coe does not stop there, however. In 2002, he and Patricia established the President's Special Assistance Fund to provide financial support for students in need. And in 2012 they made a $1 million gift to create the Henry B. Tippie Professorship in Business and Economics. They have also been immensely supportive of the College of Business at the University of Iowa, as well as Kirkwood Community College and Belle Plaine High School.
Although Henry and Patricia do not expect any special recognition for their gifts, the college is honored to have taken part in nominating them for this well-deserved award and thrilled that they were chosen as the recipients. As President Dave McInally wrote in his nomination letter, “they remain the most humble, generous, and service-oriented people I have met.”
Students flex innovative muscles at Kohawk Startup
On October 26 and 27, Coe’s Center for Creativity and Careers partnered with NewBoCo to bring a fresh new event to students: Kohawk Startup. In this 24-hour entrepreneurship and innovation event, students came together to generate ideas for new products, services and responses to social concerns. They formed teams and conducted customer discovery and research; alumni and community members functioned as mentors to help the teams as they worked through this process. The event culminated with pitch presentations given to a panel of judges. Team ScoopMe took the top prize with their idea for a ride service by college students, for college students. Team PolPlace claimed second prize with their concept of a user-friendly environment designed to connect young voters with relevant local election information. Check out the video to see highlights from the exciting weekend.
Brian Stutzman ’96
Over the summer, the Cedar Rapids community lost a dedicated leader. Brian Stutzman ’96, the executive director of Young Parents Network (YPN), passed away unexpectedly in July. His loss was felt not only by his YPN family, but by many other nonprofits in the area. Wanting to honor Stutzman’s memory and recognize his selfless commitment to the community, over 25 local leaders came together to nominate him for the Greater Cedar Rapids Foundation’s 2018 Nonprofit Leadership Excellence Award.
Stutzman joined YPN shortly after graduating from Coe with his degree in psychology. In 2000 he was named the executive director and held the position until he passed away. Stutzman was known among his colleagues and peers as a great collaborator. He was a champion for all nonprofits, believing they are at their strongest when they work together. In addition to his work at YPN, Stutzman was on the board of Gems of Hope, using his passion and experience to help the organization rise to a new level.
Stutzman’s nomination by so many nonprofit partners is a fitting tribute to a man who valued cooperation and teamwork so highly. The award will be presented at the Celebration of Community Event on November 14 at the African American Museum of Iowa. To learn more about the event and Stutzman’s inspiring legacy, click here.
Save the date: Giving Tuesday is November 27!
Whether you give your time through volunteering, make a financial gift or use the power of your voice in your local community, #GivingTuesday is a day to unite, celebrate and give back.
We would love to feature you on social media —click here to share your story and the impact you make on your community.
Coe receives Grateful Grads 2018 designation
Coe ranks among the top 200 colleges in the nation with the happiest and most successful alumni, according to Forbes
Grateful grads give graciously — at least that’s the premise Forbes employs when calculating their annual Grateful Graduates Index. Believing that alumni donations are key to institutional success, this index looks at median total private donations per enrolled student over the last seven years, along with the annual alumni participation rate for giving averaged over three years.
Thanks to a stellar faculty, cutting-edge research opportunities and innovative internships, Coe grads are making a name for themselves. PWC, NASA, Google, Boeing, Peace Corps, Mayo Clinic and Blizzard Entertainment are all among the top organization's graduates want to work for — it's not a coincidence that Coe has students and graduates that have interned or worked at these companies.
Year after year, nearly 100% of reporting graduates have been employed or in graduate school within one year, certainly a reason to be grateful. Coe grads have been generous with both their time and monetary donations. In fact, many Coe grads serve as professional mentors to current Coe students.
A charitable bequest to Coe — an easy gift to make
A bequest is one of the most popular and flexible ways you can support Coe College. In fact, the bequest is the most frequently utilized method to support charity in America. When preparing a will or trust, your heirs’ well-being will always come first. Then, once you have ensured your loved ones are provided for, we hope you will include a charitable bequest to benefit Coe.
For more information about types of bequests and bequest language, visit our website here.
Refer a Kohawk
Your time at Coe included some of the best years of your life, right?
Help someone else have an amazing experience as a Kohawk, too! If you know a student who might benefit from Coe's unique opportunities, please tell us: here.
Children of alumni receive an annual $1,000 Legacy Award.
Upcoming Alumni Events
Kohawk Kickoff Week
Monday, April 12, 2021 - Friday, April 16, 2021
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Join us for Kohawk Kickoff Week!
Grants Workshop with Mario
Wednesday, April 14, 2021
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Save the date; more information coming soon.
Poet: Neil Hilborn
Thursday, April 15, 2021
8:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Student Development - Campus Life
Do you enjoy slam poetry? Join SAC for a night of poetry with Neil Hilborn!