A student scholarship fund has been created to honor the longtime service of Gary Rupp, who has retired as professor and founding director of the University of Nebraska Great Plains Veterinary Educational Center near Clay Center.
To recognize his 22 years of leadership, colleagues and members of the beef cattle industry created an endowed student scholarship fund in his name for the School of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Their charitable contributions to the University of Nebraska Foundation established the Dr. Gary P. Rupp Beef Cattle Production Management Scholarship. The scholarship will be awarded annually to Nebraska students pursuing a doctor of veterinary medicine through the professional program in veterinary medicine who demonstrate a strong interest in beef animal production management.
Rupp says the honor, which was announced at his retirement, was a great surprise to him.
"I can't think of anything that will make me happier," he says. "It will allow more students to get into this field and do some great things in management. It's a real honor, and it has been really enjoyable to work with all of the people who made it possible and all of the people who have contributed to the scholarship."
Organizers say Rupp is well respected in the beef cattle industry and that the scholarship will commemorate his character, especially his unique ability to mentor and challenge others, and his contributions to the industry and university.
"He's one of the finest men I've ever known," says Dee Griffin, feedlot production management veterinarian and professor. "Every breath he takes is aimed to help the beef cattle producers in Nebraska to survive and prosper."
Since the Great Plains Veterinary Educational Center opened in 1988, Rupp has played a vital role in developing the center and building its prominence as a national center of excellence in food animal veterinary medical education. It offers educational programs, research, outreach and scholarly service, which is vital for advancing the rapidly changing veterinary profession and helping livestock producers meet modern challenges.
As both director and professor, Rupp took on many roles, which included administrative, teaching, research and scholarly service for the veterinary program. He's been actively involved in the development and support of the cow calf computerized herd health-management record system. He also implemented a certification program for veterinary practitioners called the Beef Cattle Production Management Series and served as its course mentor. In 2005, Rupp received the Merial Excellence in Preventative Medicine Beef Award.
More than $57,000 have been raised for the Dr. Gary P. Rupp Beef Cattle Production Management Scholarship Fund. Additional funding is sought to increase the endowment to support many future generations of veterinary medicine students interested in pursuing careers in beef cattle production management.
To learn more about the scholarship fund or to contribute in Rupp's honor, contact Ann Bruntz at the University of Nebraska Foundation at 402-458-1176 or 800-432-3216 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.