CORAL GABLES, Fla. - T. Kendall “Ken” Hunt, former football student-athlete and Founder, Chairman and CEO of VASCO Data Security International, Inc. (NASDAQ: VDSI), has made a gift of $1.5 million to endow the Ken Hunt Running Back endowed football scholarship in the University of Miami Department of Athletics.
This endowment marks the largest total gift from a former student-athlete in Athletics’ history.
The gift will fund a full scholarship in perpetuity to a running back on the football team. Hunt, a highly recruited running back from Southern Illinois, was the first athlete from his high school to receive a football scholarship from a major university.
"As a young man, I was very fortunate to receive a scholarship to play football for the University of Miami,” Hunt said. “That scholarship meant everything to me. No one in my family had ever gone to college. This was my way forward. I used the education that I received from Miami to better myself. I guess you could say that I have been successful in business. Now, I give back to the U with an endowed scholarship for the next Ken Hunt.”
His goal of playing professional football came to an abrupt end following his sophomore season when he was accidently shot above his left ankle at a sport-shooting range leaving him unable to continue playing football. The University honored Hunt’s scholarship despite the fact that he was not physically able to play on the football team for his four years at UM. This act shown by the University was something Hunt never forgot.
It was through Hunt’s experience at theUniversity of Miami that he saw firsthand the power of education and athletics and he vowed to give back to the school once he was in a position to do so.
“Ken exemplifies what it means to be a true student-athlete”, said Director of Athletics Blake James. “Ken competed at a very high level during his time at Miami and did not let adversity derail him from reaching his goals. He has gone on to be very successful professionally and has never forgotten the role Miami played in helping him get there. We are grateful to Ken for this commitment and for what it means to our entire athletic department.”
The University of Miami Department of Athletics fields 17varsity sports with over 400 plus student-athletes. Over 258 student-athletes receive athletic scholarship dollars. To make a gift or for more information, please visit www.uhurricaneclub.com.
Momentum2: the Breakthrough Campaign for the University of Miami seeks to advance learning, elevate scholarship, and make bold strides in health care in the community, across the country, and around the world. Momentum2 comes on the heels of the institution’s record- breaking Momentum: The Campaign for the University of Miami,which concluded at the end of 2007 and raised more than $1.4 billion for endowed chairs, professorships, scholarships, facilities, academic and medical programs, and other initiatives. www.miami.edu/momentum2