It was 1949 when Joel Rubel met his future wife Sylvia in Austin, Texas. After graduating, Joel moved to Dallas where he and Sylvia were married and Sylvia attended SMU. Sylvia was an English and Journalism major benefitting from a half-tuition scholarship from SMU, while also working as an editor for a local magazine to further fund her studies. By 1952, Sylvia and Joel were enjoying life as a married couple and Sylvia graduated from SMU Phi Beta Kappa and with Honors.
Thirty-five years later, out of gratitude for SMU's generosity and tuition support, the Rubels decided to give back to the University through the formation of a new scholarship fund. The Joel and Sylvia Rubel Endowed Fund would provide half-tuition scholarships to SMU students in need of financial support—the same type of scholarship assistance that supported Sylvia during her own time at the University.
Though Sylvia has passed away, the Joel and Sylvia Rubel Endowed Fund remains an emblem of the couple's generosity and gratitude. A recent recipient of funding from the Rubel's endowment explains that their support has helped him finance college and focus more on his studies. Andrew Paguaga writes, "I feel blessed to have received this scholarship and I will always be thankful for it." Andrew is now a five-semester Honor Roll student and member of two National Honor Societies.
Behind the inspiration of this gift Joel explains, "I wanted SMU to provide for students the way they provided for my wife when she attended here." In so many ways, the Joel and Sylvia Rubel Endowed Fund embodies the meaningful impact that past generations can have on the opportunities for SMU students today.
Joel remains committed to the University's future and has included SMU in his will, further supporting SMU's ability to provide financial aid upon his death. This grateful remembrance—from the establishment of their scholarship fund in 1985 to Joel's existing bequest—represents a truly inspiring commitment to SMU's unbridled future.