JONESBORO — A passion for music and appreciation for his alma mater has led Bob Bidewell of Little Rock to make another major gift to Arkansas State University.
Bidewell recently donated stock valued at more than $100,000 to the ASU Foundation Inc. At his request, proceeds from the sale of the stock will be directed to the Department of Music to help meet the department’s most pressing needs, at the discretion of the chairman and the dean.
Despite the recent impact of the coronavirus pandemic, Bidewell expressed to university representatives that committing this support is very important to him and he did not want to wait any longer to make the gift, his most recent to the academic area in which he completed two degrees.
“The education I received from the Department of Music at Arkansas State University gave me the skills to be a teacher and performer. What I gained from my time at A-State is still in my heart, mind and soul,” Bidewell explained. “I’m thrilled by the quality of the programs within the department, and I am honored to present this gift to be used as needed to help that growth and quality continue.”
Bidewell completed two degrees at A-State, a bachelor’s degree in instrumental music education in 1976, and a master’s degree in music education in 1977.
Dr. Lauren Schack Clark, interim department chair, said it is difficult to fully express just how much the music students and faculty appreciate Bidewell’s generosity.
“The gift is especially appreciated because he is allowing us to determine our greatest needs,” Clark said. “Music study presents special challenges with social distancing, so our first priority is obtaining the best possible technology and equipment to help us with safety during these unprecedented times.”