Alumni Establish Endowed Scholarship
Lipscomb Academy Alumni, Doug and Joan Wright, have generously established an endowed scholarship for Lipscomb Academy students. The scholarship’s purpose is to inspire students to attend the Lipscomb Academy despite financial need.
Doug and Joan, high school sweethearts, recently celebrated their 53rd wedding anniversary. As they look back on their time spent at the Lipscomb Academy, the Wrights recognize many structural differences, however feel the spirit and influence of the school is exactly the same.
Joan recalls “knowing how to appreciate the atmosphere (of the Lipscomb Academy)” because she didn’t come to Lipscomb until the fifth grade. She says while other students complained about daily chapel, for her it was “just wonderful”. She says it was “just a haven of peace and loving the Lord”.
The Wrights see their time at the Lipscomb Academy as formative years in their lives. Joan, a retired nurse, holds her high school chemistry teacher, John Netterville, in high regard. Joan says “if he had not been so patient and kind, I probably would not have even gotten into nursing school”. Joan graduated from the Lipscomb Academy in 1953 and went on to receive the Florence Nightingale Award from Nashville General Hospital School of Nursing in 1956. Mrs. Wright says many of the values she learned at the Lipscomb Academy were assets in nursing school.
Mr. Wright recalls his eighth grade teacher, Clarence Buckner, who “put him back on the right path” along with several other young men who “to this day, still owe where they are to him (Buckner)”. Doug and a few of his classmates accompanied Buckner on a trip to Indiana, where he preached several times. Doug says that Buckner lead by example. Mr. Wright was even baptized on Lipscomb’s Campus.
Through the years, the Wrights have stayed involved with David Lipscomb in a myriad of ways. All three of their children attended the school while Doug and Joan served as co-presidents of the elementary and high school Parent-teacher organizations and co-chairs of the Mustang Market Place. Additionally, Joan served as a relief school nurse and Doug founded and coached the High School Rifle Team.
Joan wants the Lipscomb Academy’s students of today to “be grateful in everything,” a value she learned at Lipscomb. She says when she learned to be grateful “life became much easier”. Doug encourages students to “look around you and try realize what you have.” He adds “I didn’t realize what high school, middle school and grade school meant to me until I looked back and saw what kind of person became”.
The Wrights say they decided to make the donation for the scholarship when they looked back and realized they have always kept contact with Lipscomb and tried to support the school. They recognized they were in a position to make one large donation because they “appreciate it so much and want to make a difference”.