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Programs News Joseph H Huffstutler January 29, 2018

UAB School of Health Professions’ Master of Science in Health Administration program, has established the Beasley-Hall Endowed Scholarship in Health Administration. The scholarship, which honors Beasley’s family, will support students in the MSHA Residential program.

The scholarship is named Beasley-Hall to honor his entire family. His mother, Mary Lowrey Hall and his stepfather William E. Hall, as well as his father C.D. Beasley, Jr.

“My parents and grandparents did not have the benefit of college education and most did not have envious careers, yet they were unknowingly viewed as being among the most successful individuals in our community because of both their work ethic and the things they did for others,” said Beasley, MSHA Class 19. “They lived an understated life quietly espousing the values of hard-work, selflessness and often anonymous service to others, and integrity. The principles that define the Beasley-Hall family have led me to give back through the creation of this scholarship.”

Beasley was raised in Concord, Alabama, a small community west of Birmingham. For generations, the men in his family worked manual labor for U.S. Steel. But at the age of nine, his father told him “gently yet seriously and laced with an element of humor” that manual labor was not for him and he needed to go to college. That moment changed the course of Beasley’s life and thanks to his scholarship, that moment will ultimately impact the course of many other lives.

In 1983, Beasley graduated UAB with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting. But while working his way through college at UAB Hospital, he realized there was a career path for people with business interests in health care – an industry that piqued his curiosity on a daily basis. He enrolled in the MSHA (then the Master of Science in Hospital and Health Administration) program where he found his calling and a much-needed mentor.

“When I was a student, Howard Houser, who is still teaching as an emeritus faculty member, took a chance on me so many years ago and I can never thank him enough for the contributions he made to my life and how it impacted my entire family,” said Beasley, MSHA Class 19. “Creating this scholarship is the least I can do and will only be the beginning as I will continue to support the program and look to impact many students over the years.”

“This new scholarship will make a difference in the lives of students who may not have been able to come to UAB without financial support. We are grateful to Ken for his generosity – not just with this financial gift, but with his time as a preceptor, speaker, and mentor to many students over the years,” said Christy Harris Lemak, PhD, chair of the Department of Health Services Administration. “In addition, it is wonderful to see the lasting difference that Professor Houser made on Ken as his teacher and mentor. This is just one example of many I have heard about Dr. Houser and other UAB professors who have changed lives – and indeed families – through their guidance in the classroom and beyond.”

Syliva Taylor Young Parker Ken BeasleySylvia and Taylor Young with Parker and Ken Beasley at “Leading Forward: Navigating Career Success"The Beasley-Hall Endowed Scholarship in Health Administration marks the sixth scholarship established by alumni of the Department of Health Services Administration since their “50 Years of Excellence” celebration in May 2016. Beasley says it is no coincidence.

“At the 50th anniversary celebration I was not only impressed with the success of my classmates, but also the success of the current program which is ranked second in the nation by U.S. News & World Report,” said Beasley. “This is a program that has consistently produced strong healthcare leaders and I created this scholarship to support the next generation of leaders and help continue the legacy that my classmates and I helped build.”

That next generation of healthcare leaders just happens to include his son Parker. Whereas his own father encouraged him down a different career path, Beasley encouraged his own son to follow his heart – even if it wasn’t in health care.

“Growing up, I told him over and over and over that whatever career you choose, it must be life calling and mission-driven or you will hate it and you will fail miserably,” said Beasley.

As it turns out, Parker not only followed his dad into the healthcare industry, but also followed his path to UAB where he is a member of MSHA Class 53.

Today, Ken Beasley is the CEO of OrthoArkansas in Little Rock, Arkansas, as well as CEO and founder of Pinnacle Health in Memphis, Tennessee. He continues to find time to be involved with the MSHA program beyond his scholarship. He has returned many times over the years and most recently spoke at “Beyond the H” – UAB’s Ambulatory and Non-acute Care Summit. He looks forward to visiting more in the future for mentoring, lecturing and other opportunities to work with students as they present themselves.

If you would like to become more involved with your program or create a scholarship of your own, please reach out to Amanda Martin at 205-996-5930 or aebmartin@uab.edu.

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