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Alumni and Friends Making an Impact

Be the Light

“The world is so messy, and there’s so much going on,” said Joe Vicario. “At UD, I’ve realized that you can make that difference. You can make that change. You can be the light in someone else’s day — in someone else’s life.”

Vicario, a senior mechanical engineering student who received the Joseph Militello Scholarship, thought that UD would be out of reach after he lost his father to cancer his junior year of high school.

“I am the oldest of four boys, and college was the last thing on my mind at the time,” said Vicario. “I wanted to focus on helping my mom raise my younger brothers and money was tight. However, my selfless mom wanted me to have the experience and decided to let me go to Dayton even if I didn’t know how I was going to complete school there.”

Vicario thought he might be able to finish a year at UD, maybe two, before finances forced him to choose another school. Then he received his scholarship.

“Getting the scholarship not only allowed me to stay, it allowed me to get really involved,” said Vicario, who dove into service and campus activities. “I began to spread myself too thin, but serving the community and others was integral to who I am, and I found focus through Campus Ministry and Campus Recreation.”

One experience he points to that really affected him was a live-in retreat with Marianist brothers on campus. “Being able to stay with them on Stonemill (Road) really reshaped how I saw UD. I saw their service back to community. They shared meals. Prayers. I saw the true beauty behind the University and what it’s about.”

That wouldn’t have been possible for Vicario without a scholarship, and he’s grateful for the opportunity.

“Being at UD for all four years has made a world of difference, and I hope donors know that they are completely reshaping student lives,” said Vicario. “I wouldn’t be the same person without UD. I got super involved in my faith and my drive to help. Whatever I do to help others in the world from here, it’s thanks to the people who donated to the scholarship.”

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