UT Dallas - The LINK
January 2013

Woman’s Club Inspires Alumna's Gift

Jefflyn Williamson Group

Jefflyn Williamson BS'83 (center) visited with members of the Northwood Woman's Club, which awarded Williamson a college scholarship. The gift Williamson received inspired her to create an endowed scholarship and to include UT Dallas in her estate plans.

In 1968, a group of local women banded together to establish the Northwood Woman’s Club (NWC). Much more than a social club, the organization set out to achieve a specific purpose—to provide funding and opportunities for others in the community.

A significant part of that endeavor was the creation of an endowed scholarship at UT Dallas, with preference given to qualified people who decided to pursue education to become self-supporting following personal crises or reversals in their lives.

More than 30 years later, the members of the club realized the full impact of their generosity with the announcement that one of their scholarship recipients was making a gift to UT Dallas in response to the gift she had received from NWC.

That donor is Jefflyn Williamson BS’83.

"Occasionally we have the opportunity to meet prior scholarship recipients and to hear the rest of their story," said Peggy Laidlaw, NWC President. "That experience is gratifying and re-energizes us as we continue to look to the future and new student applications. Recently, we were stunned, and then thrilled to learn that one of our earliest scholarship awards was instrumental in such success as that achieved by Jefflyn Williamson."

Amidst hugs and tears, Williamson recently shared her story with NWC members and described the impact their funds had on her student life, her future, and her decision to help others as they had helped her.

A first-generation college student, Williamson came to UT Dallas eager to conquer the business world. Without the support of the NWC scholarship, however, her dreams of a career in commercial real estate would have been impossible.

Today, Williamson enjoys a thriving career in brokerage, development and acquisitions. Through Williamson's gifts to the Jefflyn Williamson Endowment for Women, the Jefflyn Williamson Opportunity Fund, and involvement in the Naveen Jindal School of Management's real estate program, she hopes to help other students find their way through school and into successful careers.

Inspired by Williamson's gift to UT Dallas, NWC plans to share her message with every member starting with their meeting and scholarship banquet in May. Williamson will be the keynote speaker.

"NWC has always recognized the importance of higher education," Laidlaw said. "By establishing this endowment, we guaranteed that these scholarships will be available for deserving students not only now, but in perpetuity."

For more information on how you can support the University, contact Dwight Clasby, assistant vice president of development and alumni relations, at dclasby@utdallas.edu or 972-883-6511.

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