Hamline News

Hamline '66 alumna gives $2.5 million to chem student scholarships & research



She lived a modest life, and she left a major legacy. Carol V. Beggs, a 1966 Hamline graduate and chemistry major, bequeathed her estate of $2.5 million to her alma mater.

Beggs lost a difficult battle to ovarian cancer at the young age of 62; her dying wish was that a Hamline graduate will someday find a cure for the disease.

Beggs’ gift to Hamline, which is tied for the fifth largest gift the university has received, has been earmarked to provide scholarships for juniors and seniors at Hamline University who are majoring in chemistry, to purchase upgraded equipment for use in the science labs at Hamline, and to provide support to student-led research opportunities.

“Carol Beggs was a pioneer, pursuing a career in science at a time when that was uncommon for a woman, and she remains a role model for young people today,” said Hamline University President Linda Hanson. “Her generous gift to the university greatly expands the opportunities Hamline can provide to its chemistry students in the areas of scholarship and research. Hundreds of Hamline students—and our communities at large, which will be impacted by our students’ contributions in the area of science—will benefit from her legacy gift.” 

Beggs attended Hamline University from 1963-1966. She went on to work for a number of years as a chemist at 3M. From there, she spent several decades as a chemist for the State of Wisconsin. At one time in her career, she sought to invest in her coworkers’ stock picking club. The all-male club declined her investment because of her gender. That did not prevent her from sitting in on their meetings and taking what knowledge she could glean from observing them. She used that to make her own stock purchases, which is how she amassed a portion of her wealth. 

“Carol never had any children of her own to inherit her wealth. The recipients of this endowment become the children she never had,” said Begg’s closest friend Lynn Beyler. “Her dream was that someday one of those students would be able to find the cure for cancer.  I want to thank the students, in advance, for doing their part in making my friend Carol's dream come true.”

To learn more about Hamline’s chemistry program and opportunities for students, click here.

To learn more about Hamline's planned giving program, click here.