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Fundraising Proposal for the Vicente Rodriguez Endowed Scholarship for Entertainment Engineering and Design Students

PLSN Staff • News • April 27, 2021


LAS VEGAS –  To endow a scholarship in memory of Vicente Rodriguez. Vicente was a UNLV student who died on May 20, 2009, less than a week after his 20th birthday. He died as a result of an accidental fall. Vicente had taken a one-night job to help pack up equipment and fell nearly 40 feet while trying to reach a secure spot to clip in his fall-arrest line.

Why now?

Higher education changes lives and families for generations. Scholarships, such as the Vicente Rodriguez Scholarship, will help create opportunities for EED students – future industry professionals and colleagues.

In addition, the Vicente Rodriguez Scholarship was created by the Rodriguez family in 2009 in memory of their son and seeded with gifts from family and friends; however, the account never grew large enough to be endowed.

It is time for this important scholarship to be endowed and for the Rodriguez family to celebrate their son’s life with every student who is awarded the scholarship. Please help us honor Vicente’s memory by contributing to the Vicente Rodriguez Scholarship Fund.

What is a scholarship endowment?

A scholarship endowment fund is similar to a savings account or an investment account. The income from the endowment fund is used to support a scholarship, but the principal of the fund remains untouched. The endowment fund thus provides scholarship support for students in perpetuity. The minimum amount necessary to endow a scholarship fund is $30,000. However, an endowment of $150,000 is necessary to generate sufficient income to pay current tuition and fees for one full-time student with Nevada residency for one year.

Giving Options

  • One-time gift to help fund the endowment
  • Multi-year pledge – donor determines a gift to fund the endowment over time, for example:

$5,000 per year for five years for a total contribution to the endowment of $25,000

  • Gifts can be made through an employee matching gift program
  • Gifts can be made anonymously

Other Funding Resources

Several gifts have been made to support this special endeavor. Most of the gifts were made by

family and friends between 2009 – 2012. Additional gifts have been made to the fund as a result

of our renewed fundraising efforts.

How to Give

Mail Online:

Checks can be made payable to the UNLV

Foundation and mailed to:

Diane Zapach

UNLV College of Fine Arts

4505 S. Maryland Parkway

Box 455013

Las Vegas, NV 89154-5013

Please enter “Vicente Rodriguez Scholarship” on the

memo line of your check.

Select “View all giving opportunities…”

Chose “Vicente Rodriguez Scholarship”

Follow prompts

For anonymous gifts, select the option: “Do you want your gift to be anonymous?”

Thank you

Thank you for your consideration to help fund this meaningful endowment.

Witnessing the man who I had come to know and respect in the aftermath of losing a child

is what really makes this scholarship important to me. I have taught a number of rigging

safety technical theatre classes. The retelling of Vicente’s tragic end always gets to me.

Once endowed, this scholarship will help many students make their way through school to

careers in the entertainment industry. My hope is that each scholarship recipient will take

with them the lesson of Vicente’s life and prevent similar tragedies from happening in the


~Michael Genova, entertainment engineering and design at UNLV associate professor in

residence and former co-worker of Vicente’s father

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