Steve Hicks' generous gift to the University of Texas means you don't have to go into debt if you want to help people.
Few people are aware of the stress that comes with being a social worker. It involves working in difficult circumstances with individuals of all ages, with the objective of improving the situation of others, particularly the underprivileged. Additionally, it’s not a well-paying career, as noted by CNN Money when it listed “social worker” as one of the top stressful, low-paying jobs.
Thank God for people like Steve Hicks, who are aware of the challenging but invaluable work that social workers do. According to Good News Network, Hicks, a telecommunications pioneer, referred to the duties of a social worker as “God’s work.” And as a result of his admiration for the field, he recently made an exceptionally generous donation of $25 million to the School of Social Work at the University of Texas, where he serves on the Board of Regents.
“[Helping] others is the true essence of social work,” Hicks said. “I am not a social worker, but I understand the need to reduce student debt burden so that social work graduates can stay in their careers doing what they love and positively affecting the lives of thousands of people.”
Student debt can be a tremendous financial burden, adding even more pressure to the already stressful lifestyle of a social worker. “The average social work graduate leaves school with about $45,000 worth of student debt,” Hicks noted. As a result of his generosity, numerous students will receive an education that will enable them to serve the community without tens of thousands of dollars worth of debt on their shoulders.
“Students who go into social work are doing it because they want to help people so it’s very important for us to … provide financial support for students to pursue an education and ultimately a professional career in social work,” said a very grateful Gregory L. Fenves, president of the University of Texas at Austin. In light of this generous gift, the university officially renamed the School of Social Work the Steve Hicks School of Social Work.
Hicks is an inspiration not only because of his generosity, but also because of his cleverness in how he chooses to donate. “I have historically given to organizations that help other people,” he said in explaining how he makes the most of his contributions. “The School of Social Work was the perfect fit, where I thought I could make the most impact.”
For more about Hicks and his gesture, check out the video below: