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Shaw University Employee Wins $2M Powerball Jackpot; Endows Scholarship

July 11, 2014 - Long-time Shaw University employee Marilyn Fields claimed a $2 million Powerball jackpot prize yesterday. She will use some of the money to fully endow a University scholarship she created in 2013.Fields, a 1976 Shaw graduate, serves as the executive assistant to the president and has been an employee for 38 years. She created the Richardson Johnson Fields Endowed Scholarship in September 2013 to honor her parents and to provide financial assistance to Shaw students in need. With $5,000 in seed money, she was able to start the scholarship, but her new found wealth will allow her to fully endow the scholarship to $25,000 to meet University requirements.

“For me, it was a miracle to attend Shaw University," Fields said in a statement released by the North Carolina Education Lottery. "By awarding a student with the Richardson Johnson Fields Endowed Scholarship, I can give students who are doing the best that they can academically, but still need financial help, the same opportunity I had.”

Fields’ ties to the University run deep. In addition to being a graduate and an employee, she met her husband Charlie, also a graduate, while she was a student. Her son Brandon graduated from Shaw in 2003 and her daughter Nina attend the University for several years. In October 2013, Fields was inducted into the University’s “Crystal Bear Society” for establishing an endowed scholarship.

“Marilyn is beloved by this institution,” said Dr. Gaddis J. Faulcon, Shaw’s acting president. “She has been a faithful and consistent donor and has given Shaw her time, talent and money for nearly 40 years. She has sponsored students, given some money and has done whatever she can for those in need. We are thrilled and thankful for her. This could not have happened to a better person.”

In a few weeks Fields will be celebrating her 60th birthday, but she still plans on retiring at 62. She has not yet decided how much she will give to Shaw, but notes “Shaw was god sent. As long as I live, Shaw will not be free of me.”