The College of Education and Health Professions honored winners of the Weber and Ferrell athletic training education scholarships at a reception Oct. 23. Photos by Brooke McNeely Galligan
Weber, Ferrell Scholarships Honor Longtime Razorback Athletic Trainers
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The University of Arkansas congratulated the five recipients of athletic training education scholarships honoring longtime Razorback athletic trainers Dean Weber and the late Bill Ferrell at a reception Oct. 23.
"The athletic training education program and faculty want to express their sincere appreciation and gratitude for the generosity of the endowed Weber/Ferrell Athletic Training Scholarships," said Jeff Bonacci, director of the program. "This scholarship gift has provided the needed monies for athletic training students to continue their graduate education at the University of Arkansas. This support signifies the respect that former Arkansas athletes have for both Dean Weber and Bill Ferrell as well as their appreciation for the outstanding health care that they provided for all of their student-athletes."
Jon Hochstetler of Mackinaw, Ill., won both the Weber and Ferrell scholarships. The Weber scholarship is presented to the top student in the athletic training education program, a graduate degree program in the university's College of Education and Health Professions.
The other four Ferrell scholarship winners are Kurt Andrews of Rochester, Mich.; Taylor Ludy of Kirkland, Wash.; Hillary Plummer of Snellville, Ga.; and Brittany Widman of Blaine, Minn.
Andrews, Ludy and Widman are all working with the Razorback football team for their clinical rotation this semester. Hochstetler is working with the track program, and Plummer is working with the women's softball team.
The students were recognized during a pregame event Oct. 23 on the Fayetteville campus. In attendance were Weber and many of the seniors from the 1979 Razorback football team who created the award in honor of Weber, who is now the director of equipment operations in the department of intercollegiate athletics. Following the 1979 team's lead, the Razorback Foundation and Jim Lindsey created another award in memory of the late Bill Ferrell, longtime athletic trainer and baseball coach. Members of the Ferrell family and representatives of the college, the university and the athletic department also attended.
The 1979 Razorback football team had one of the great seasons in school history. They were called “a team without stars” because of their focus on team accomplishments rather than individual recognition.
At their 25th reunion celebration in 2004, the seniors decided to commit themselves as a group to a project that would have a lasting effect and further strengthen their bond. They established three goals for their project, and all three were met: to continue their practice of achieving 100 percent participation as a group of 14 teammates, to give back to the University of Arkansas, and to honor their good friend Weber for his friendship and his years of service and dedication to the university and the many student-athletes under his care.
The Razorback A Club – a group comprising former athletes and lettermen – and Lindsey worked together to raise money in memory of Ferrell, the longtime athletic trainer and head baseball coach at the university. Lindsey, former chairman of the university’s Board of Trustees and a member of the 1964 National Championship football team, agreed to match the money raised by the club members.
The scholarship winners:
- Kurt Andrews of Rochester, Mich., graduated from Rochester Stoney Creek High School and received his undergraduate degree in exercise science from Oakland University in Rochester. He is the son of Kim and Bill Andrews of Rochester.
- Jon Hochstetler of Mackinaw, Ill., graduated from Dee-Mack High School and received his undergraduate degree in athletic training from Eureka (Ill.) College. He is the son of Cindy Hochstetler of Normal, Ill., and Marty Hochstetler of Morton, Ill.
- Taylor Ludy of Kirkland, Wash., graduated from Inglemoor High School and received her undergraduate degree in health ecology from the University of Nevada at Reno. She is the daughter of Tracy and Scott Ludy of Kirkland.
- Hillary Plummer of Snellville, Ga., graduated from South Gwinnett High School and received her undergraduate degree in exercise science from Georgia College & State University. She is the daughter of Charlotte and Randy Plummer.
- Brittany Widman of Blaine, Minn., graduated from Spring Lake Park High School and received her undergraduate degree in kinesiology from the University of Minnesota. She is the daughter of Evangeline and Craig Widman of Blaine.
Catherine Horita of Atkins, a junior majoring in kinesiology, was also honored as the first recipient of a scholarship created by the family of Zachary Brian Hooper of Camden, a University of Arkansas graduate who died May 30, 2009, at the age of 21. Horita works as a volunteer student trainer with the Razorback football team as Hooper had done.
Hooper's parents, Gaye and Gerald Manning of Camden and Brian and Bawana Hooper of Little Rock, created the award to help another student working for the team Hooper loved. The community pitched in with several fund-raising events that benefited the scholarship fund.