The Ohio Foundation of Independent Colleges (OFIC) hosted their annual Evening of Excellence on Thursday, April 18. Among the Hall of Excellence honorees was Tiffin University alumnus, Dr. Gary Heminger ’77, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC).
TU President Dr. Lillian Schumacher introduced Heminger, stating that his career has been marked by his commitment to education, leadership and community. Dr. Heminger has long valued public service and has given his leadership to a variety of organizations, both locally and across the world.
He was awarded an honorary Tiffin University Doctor of Laws degree in 1991, and he was elected to the TU Board of Trustees that same year. He served as the Board Chair from 1996 until his retirement in 2014. He received Board Chairman Emeritus status upon his retirement. Dr. Heminger was TU’s commencement speaker twice; once in 1991 and again in 2014, and now sits on the Board of The Ohio State University.
He has been generous in giving back to his alma mater and has the Heminger family name on one of TU’s newest buildings on campus, the Heminger Center.
Dr. Schumacher also shared information about the students on OFIC campuses. She said that OFIC schools attract outstanding high school students and, in some cases, nontraditional and adult students who study in graduate programs. Those students come from various backgrounds, various regions of the United States, and various countries around the globe. Many are first-generation college students with great financial need. “Independent” campuses, like OFIC’s, are committed to serving students facing financial hardships with nearly 30% of students receiving Pell Grants – a percentage that is higher than the state-funded campuses. In addition, our combined schools provide close to one billion dollars in institutional aid to our students, one of the many reasons that OFIC members’ financial support is so critical to students’ continued success.
She stated that while some students come with career aspirations in mind, others have no idea about their future plans. OFIC schools challenge and support them in their journey to select a major that connects them to jobs and career goals. Some students arrive on campus with a very worldly outlook and others, at times, a narrower view of people and things. But they transform while they participate in the collegiate journey on an OFIC campus, which intentionally prepares students through class work and campus experiences, for work and life in our global world.
Finally, in fact, at TU we are intentionally preparing them for our global world by providing all of our students with a core curriculum focused on a set of nine global diversity competencies grouped as part of four larger pillars: 1. Foundational mindset; 2. Cognitive mindset; 3. Inclusive mindset; and 4. Integrative mindset. Here is our promise starting this fall:
Tiffin University graduates, regardless of their area of specialty are: innovative problem-solvers who can leverage diversity of any type to work effectively with people who are different from them and produce innovative ideas.