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Northwest Missouri State University

News Release

Dr. Dwight Maxwell, a retired Northwest faculty member, and his wife Sandra, a Northwest alumna, are establishing a scholarship in their names to assist students attending the University.

Dr. Dwight Maxwell, a retired Northwest faculty member, and his wife Sandra, a Northwest alumna, are establishing a scholarship in their names to assist students attending the University. (Photo by Darren Whitley/University Relations)

Feb. 8, 2013

Former geology professor, alumna set up bequest to Northwest

Through an endowed scholarship bequest in their living trust, Dr. Dwight Maxwell, who was a member of the Northwest faculty from 1970 to 2000 and retired as a professor, and his wife Sandra, a Northwest alumna, will establish a scholarship in their names after their lifetimes to assist students attending the University.

Recipients must have declared a major in the Department of Natural Sciences, with preference given to geology majors who have achieved at least sophomore status and carry a 3.0 grade-point average.

“I benefitted from scholarships after I graduated from high school, and it just seems natural to give something back,” Dwight said. “The year I graduated with my undergraduate degree the Soviet Union stunned the world by sending a spaceship to the moon. As a result, the United States moved considerable amount of money to push our work forward, and because of this I was able to obtain a Ph.D. in five years with scholarships at the University of Montana. Since I taught at Northwest for 30 years, it is fitting for me to give back to the University so that other students may benefit from scholarships the way I did.”

Dwight arrived at Northwest with fond memories of his sister, Alice Maxwell Shimel, graduating from the University with a biology degree. He taught in the geology department, becoming just the third professor to join that department. He served as department chair for four years before retiring. 

Having earned credits at a number of other colleges and universities, Sandra came to Northwest with her husband and enrolled as a non-traditional student, completing her bachelor’s degree in communication disorders in 1981. She then worked in schools in Stanberry and Maryville as a speech language pathologist.

Sandra said she appreciated the faculty’s congeniality and focus on helping students learn.

“I’ve been to a lot of schools, and I can tell this is one of the best – it really is,” she said.

The Maxwells boast an entire family of Bearcats. Their son, Peter Malmberg, earned his bachelor’s degree in history in 1991, their daughter Heather (Malmberg) Greenfield graduated that same year with a bachelor’s degree in international business, and their son-in-law, Troy Greenfield, earned his bachelor’s degree in industrial technology in 1990.

Dwight says he always enjoyed teaching at Northwest.

“It’s a good place, and we want to offer continuous support after we are gone,” he said.

One of the easiest planned gifts to create and implement is the will bequest. Donors may give any percentage of their estate as a charitable gift to Northwest when a current gift of real estate or cash might not otherwise be feasible. Among the advantages of a will bequest, donors can maintain control of their assets, receive an estate tax deduction and receive a membership in the James H. Lemon Heritage Society.

For more information about giving to Northwest, contact the Office of University Advancement at 660.562.1248 or

For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468