A beautiful vista of treetops, colorful skies and sounds of birds form the backdrop of the video David Northrop's colleagues created to memorialize him. Friends, co-workers and students Northrop knew as associate director for Information Technologies at UNM describe him as an exuberant, technically savvy and managerially skilled individual.

In 2008, UNM IT staff created the David J. Northrop Endowed Internship. In line with Northrop's philosophy of work and life, the program will, in a practical way, mentor students and bridge the gap between formal education and industry expectations. Northrop's friends and coworkers endeavor to grow the fund to $100,000.

More than 50 endowments are created on average at UNM each year, with a wide variety of purposes. Many are created to insure that the people who work, teach and inspire others at the University of New Mexico are remembered.

Timothy Moy was an associate professor of history at UNM who specialized in 20th-century science and culture. A superb instructor, he was noted for his skill combined with avid curiosity, an extraordinarily even temperament and a superb sense of humor.  The endowment established in his honor in 2009 supports history department graduate teaching assistants within the College of Arts and Sciences.

Another endowment honors a "magnetic person who inspired all who knew her": The Deborah K. LaPointe Organizational Learning and Instructional Technology (OLIT) Endowed Scholarship Fund. LaPointe earned a Ph.D. at UNM and was an assistant professor and assistant director of Education Development at UNM's Health Science Library, and held a secondary appointment as an assistant professor in the OLIT Program. The 2009 endowment established in her name provides scholarships for OLIT students.

Hundreds of similar endowments allow the personalities, philosophies and legacy of valued colleagues, teachers, mentors and friends to live on at UNM.

To learn more about the David J. Northrop Memorial Internship Program or give online, visit djnintern.unm.edu. To donate to any fund at UNM through United Way, name the fund in your online or printable pledge form.

Story by Wendy Antonio