Oregon Institute of Technology, “Oregon Tech,” is proud to announce a generous gift from the trust of the late Gerda Hyde, to fulfill her wish to fully endow the Hyde Memorial Scholarship. Sons John and Taylor Hyde presented the gift to the Oregon Tech Foundation and Oregon Tech president Nagi Naganathan, Ph.D., at the Klamath Falls campus in May 2019.
“We are pleased to accept this special gift, to continue and honor the legacy of a very special woman,” said Dr. Naganathan. “I know that Gerda passed on to her children her wish that they continue to “take care of Oregon Tech”. We thank the Hyde Family for their continued commitment and support. Gerda was steadfast in her dedication to our university and passionate about our scholarship program, and I believe this would be a very proud moment for her.”
Gerda’s influence continues to be felt throughout the Klamath Basin from her longtime involvement in many community organizations. The impact of her commitment to improving the community combined with her willingness to take action resulted in immeasurable positive change. She certainly made a lasting impression at Oregon Tech, where she served on the Board of Directors for the Oregon Tech Foundation from 1995-2017.
During her time on the Board, the Foundation helped change the face of the University in a variety of areas. Gerda was a champion for all aspects of Oregon Tech, but her deep passion for the scholarship program changed countless lives – the Hyde Memorial Scholarship was established November 6, 2007, by Gerda, who served as co-chair of the Oregon Tech Foundation Scholarship Committee at the time. During her longtime service on the scholarship committee, including 10 years as committee chair, more than $5 million in scholarships were awarded to deserving and talented students. The Hyde Memorial Scholarship supports students from Klamath County high schools, with a preference for students from Chiloquin High School, and further preference for students pursuing degrees in the field of environmental studies. Thanks to this recent additional gift, the Hyde Memorial Scholarship will now benefit students for generations to come.
Additionally, her commitment to providing educational opportunities to Oregon Tech students inspired her to welcome students from Oregon Tech’s Environmental Science program to utilize the Yamsi Ranch as a living laboratory, allowing them to better learn about issues faced by ranchers in the region. In honor of Gerda’s unwavering commitment to student success and environmental studies, Oregon Tech proudly unveiled the Gerda Hyde Watershed Science and Technology Lab in October 2018 — a state-of-the-art interdisciplinary, collaborative workspace supporting experiential learning.
“Gerda’s tenacious spirit and generosity will live on in the hearts of those who knew and loved her, and now in every single student who receives her scholarship or has the opportunity to study and experiment in the Gerda Hyde Watershed Science and Technology Lab,” shared Dr. Naganathan. “May each student experience a measure of Gerda’s passion and carry that with them into their own communities.”
To learn more about how you can support students at Oregon Tech, contact Tracy Ricketts, associate vice president for Development and Alumni Relations, at 541.885.1118 or Tracy.Ricketts@oit.edu.