Leota Benzel Schilling 1995


Scholarship Contact: Mr. Vernon P. Schilling

Created By: Leota’s two dear friends, Karen and Ivy, and additionally funded by RVC Nursing Alumni,friends and family in memory of Leota Benzel Schilling (October 2, 1935 – January 18, 2017)

The Leota Benzel Schilling Nursing Alumni Scholarship is a perfect example a love that remains strong. Leota’s two dear friends, Karen and Ivy, approached the Foundation with the idea of creating a memorial scholarship in Leota’s name. Within a year of launching the fundraising initiative, the goal of $10,000 was reached to permanently endow this fund. The fund has grown to over $200,000, and it will be awarded to nursing students every year that our college is in existence. This scholarship not only will allow her legacy to remain strong on our campus, it will impact countless students, and will give her loved ones something to celebrate year after year.

Leota was born the daughter of the late Emile and Stephanie (Wisovaty) Herman. She was a well-respected staff nurse, clinical nurse, instructor, and then the Director of Nursing at Rock Valley College. With a long running career from 1973-1995, she left her mark on this college and the nursing program. A few of her other titles that were of great importance to her were mentor, friend, loving wife, mother and grandmother.

Quote from past student, Pam Cunnigham:
“Mrs. Benzel was my first clinical instructor at NIU 46 years ago. She was patient and kind and had a sense of humor when I squirted vitamin B12 all over her one day. She simply wiped it off her face and told me to start over and please not do that again. I shall always remember her.”