For 33 years, Dr. Fred Davis devoted his professional life to teaching and mentoring students and fellow faculty members at Troy University.
Davis joined the TROY faculty in 1970 and served for many years as an assistant professor and chair of the English Department. His service to the University didn’t stop there. As he admits, he “wore many hats” during his time at TROY. Davis also served as director of the University’s general studies program for a time, and spent nearly 25 years as the faculty representative for athletics. He also served as associate provost before being promoted to provost, the position he held when he retired in 2003.
Now, one of his former students, Jane Beasley, is honoring him through contributing to a scholarship in his name, the Fred B. Davis Pre-Law Scholarship. The scholarship will benefit deserving pre-law students, with a preference for English majors at the Troy Campus.
“Professor Davis taught me when I was at what was then Troy State University in the early 1970s,” Beasley said. “I respected him then as a professor who could engage his students with his questions and lectures, but he became much more than that to me – a wise counselor who guided me in my career choices, including writing a letter of recommendation for me when I applied to law school, a role model and, eventually, a friend.”
Many years later, Davis would also assist Beasley in establishing a scholarship in memory of her mother, Marion Horne Beasley.
“I called him and asked for his guidance again, both in establishing the scholarship and in overseeing the scholarship funds and recipients,” she said. “He has been involved for several years now and his assistance has been invaluable, so when I was thinking of a way to thank him, I decided that to contribute to a scholarship in his name would be the best way to do that.”
Davis said being recognized in a way that is beneficial to current and future students was humbling.
“I was quite surprised and humbled that someone would ever do that for me,” Davis said. “I hope that many deserving students will benefit from this scholarship.”
With the decrease of state support and the increasing costs of tuition, Davis said it was important to the life of the University to continue to make scholarship opportunities available to deserving students.
“When you put everything else aside, the barometer of how well a university is doing is the quality of graduates it is turning out,” he said. “It is very important that we keep those scholarships coming in order to provide opportunities for students. I know that when I was in college, I wouldn’t have been able to achieve what I was able to achieve without the help of scholarships and teaching assistantships.”
Davis said TROY has a history of affordability and financial aid opportunities such as endowed scholarships play an important role in maintaining quality and affordability in a climate of sky-rocketing student debt.
“Troy University has always been one of those schools with a history of being accessible and affordable,” he said. “It is important that we continue to serve our students in that way.”