After a 33-year-old UF alumnus lost his two-year battle with brain cancer earlier this month, his family is working to ensure that his legacy as a “Triple Gator” lives on.
Dr. Huy Huynh was a former Student Government cabinet director, a founding brother of Pi Delta Psi’s Sigma chapter and the first Vietnamese-American student to be tapped by Florida Blue Key. He received both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UF in addition to a Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from UF’s College of Dentistry.
According to his friends, Huynh was the model of an involved and outgoing student.
“Huy was really one of those people who could really bring people together,” said Fernando Nin, one of Huy’s fraternity brothers. “Huy was the kind of person everyone knew if you were involved on campus.”
Huy’s brother, Hoang Huynh, said the family wanted to honor his memory by helping students who shared his same dream: to get a degree from the UF College of Dentistry. After discussing it together, Hoang said his family decided the best way to celebrate Huy’s life would be to create a scholarship to the college in his name.
On June 22, with the help of Huy’s fraternity brothers, the Huynh family created and promoted a crowdfunding page to raise the money for the Huy D. Huynh Endowment Scholarship Fund. By Wednesday, only six days later, the family had raised $45,629, exceeding their original goal of $30,000. The endowment will allow a scholarship named after him to give back to UF students.
“He has done so much for the community,” Hoang said. “He has inspired so many, and my brother deserves so much more.”
Due to the recency of the funeral, Huy’s family said they have yet to work out the specific details of the scholarship. So far, the only known information is that it will bear Huy’s name and be available for students in the UF College of Dentistry.
“We just knew from the beginning we wanted to do a scholarship in his name,” Hoang said.