This scholarship was established in memory of Austin Joseph Sawicki. Austin, 26, died in a construction accident in San Diego on May 29, 2008. Austin graduated from Poway High School in 2000. He went on to attend Gonzaga University where he graduated Cum Laude in 2004 with a B.A. in philosophy and religion. He then secured a full scholarship to attend Northern Illinois University, and he obtained his M.A. in anthropology in 2006 while working as a graduate instructor in The Center for the Study of Women, Gender & Sexuality. Austin was in the final stages of completing his thesis for his second master’s degree in anthropology, and his goal was to obtain his Ph.D. and become a university professor. Austin loved life and lived it to the fullest. His world was filled with laughter, friends, and a quest for knowledge. He touched every life around him with his compassion, love, and amazing sense of humor and great smile. It is the hope of his family and friends, that through this scholarship, Austin’s memory will live on by helping students at Northern Illinois University reach their full potential.