Larry and Nicki Soice continue their son’s love of WSU through a memorial scholarship
Less than a year old, Scott Soice began his visits to the Wichita State campus to attend ball games with his parents. At the age of 10, he announced that he was going to attend college at WSU. His interest in its engineering program and the Walter H. Beech Wind Tunnel made him bypass a scholarship to another university. With the support of his parents and assistance of his high school counselor, Scott researched, applied for and received a Dwane L. and Velma L. Wallace Scholarship and stepped on campus in Fall 1991 as an incoming freshman.
"He had great opportunities on this campus," said Nicki Soice, Scott’s mother.
After Scott’s death in July 2011, a new opportunity for WSU engineering students arose. From the initial memorial, a scholarship was established by Scott’s parents, Larry and Nicki Soice, in the WSU College of Engineering.
"This was our first thought to honor Scott," said Nicki. "We just said, ‘What would he have wanted?’ and this is what he would have wanted."
"We hope it gives aspiring engineers some of the same opportunities he had," said Larry Soice.
The Scott E. Soice Engineering Scholarship will be given to its first recipient for Fall 2012. Preference will be to a student majoring in aerospace engineering, Scott’s major. The initial award will be made to a student with junior standing and can carry into the senior year, if he/she maintains eligibility.
"By the time students enter their junior year, they are committed to the program," said Larry. "That is the time we want to reward them for their decision by helping them financially. We know some students work multiple jobs to help finance their education."
Scott’s university experience and career path
The Soices were concerned about Scott living at home and not getting involved while attending WSU.
"He nearly gave his mother a heart attack when he came home and said he wanted to join a fraternity," said Nicki.
But, she and Larry toured the Sigma Phi Epsilon house, met some of the boys and Scott sold them on the idea. He received the Craig Barton Outstanding Greek Sophomore Endowed Scholarship Fund and, later, served as the fraternity’s treasurer and president.
"We also want to do something with Scott’s fraternity," said Larry, "maybe some financial assistance for incoming presidents."
Scott played trumpet in the WSU concert band and was named Senior Honor Man prior to graduating in 1996 with a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering. Scott received a Master of Business Administration at WSU in 2002. He began giving back to his alma mater by supporting the W. Frank Barton School of Business and the Wallace Alumni Legacy Endowed Scholarship.
Scott had a job through the WSU Office of Cooperative Education and Work-Based Learning at Beech/Raytheon and a summer internship with the Boeing Co., which continued during his last year at WSU and turned into a full-time job after graduation. He used the skills he learned at WSU in the loads and stress department. Scott was selected for a leadership training program and helped conduct operational financial audits at various Boeing facilities in the United States. Upon completion of this program, he was relocated to Seattle as the procurement interface manager for quality control.
Even after graduation and being in the work force for several years, no matter where he was, Scott was public about his pride in being a Shocker.
"He was constantly talking about WSU and was always recruiting," said Nicki. "He loved his school."
To donate to the Scott E. Soice Engineering Scholarship, go to our online giving page and designate your gift to this fund. To establish a memorial fund, contact Jessica Treadwell, WSU Foundation development officer, at (316) 978-6842 or firstname.lastname@example.org.