• Fighting past disability, Baylor Law grad and friends completely fund a new BU scholarship

    Allison Dickson and friends at the As You Wish movie night

    In January, we introduced you to Allison Dickson, JD ’07, the 2007 Baylor Law valedictorian who refused to let a lifelong battle with a muscular condition deter her from her dreams. Allison lives with Werdnig-Hoffman disease, which leads to atrophy of her spinal muscles. Simple tasks like lifting paper and books can be difficult — yet her inner strength leaves a lasting impact on all who know her.

    When we shared her story earlier this year, Allison was working to create an endowed scholarship so that she could help other students follow their own dreams at Baylor Law School. It’s not uncommon for it to take years to raise enough money to endow a fund — but Allison’s hard work (and the large number of friends she’s made over the years) helped turn that dream into a reality much more quickly.

    In just a few short months, Allison and her friends raised the money to completely fund the Allison Dickson Baylor Law Endowed Scholarship Fund — an incredibly fast turnaround, and a testament to Allison’s contagious “sparkplug spirit,” as one of her Baylor law classmates put it. Friends from Baylor and others in the community partnered in creative ways to quickly raise funds. Among their efforts was a movie night fundraiser in August, which attracted over 1,500 people to watch The Princess Bride outdoors in Temple; the “As You Wish Movie Under the Stars” alone raised $25,000 for the scholarship!

    For Allison, exceeding expectations has become a way of life. When she was diagnosed with Werdnig-Hoffman at the age of one, doctors estimated she had less than a year to live. In 2014, she faced a serious illness that threatened her ability to speak or breath on her own. Doctors predicted she would do neither — but again, she proved stronger than her diagnosis. Joining with others to fund a full scholarship in less than a year is a fitting step, but only the latest in an incredible life inspiring others.

    “The scholarship is funded, but don’t think Allison has any intention of stopping here,” says Ethan Lange, JD ’08, a former Baylor Law classmate. “Her heart for philanthropy is large and strong, and donations can always be made to the fund. Although she has left a far greater legacy than she could ever have imagined, now generations of future Baylor lawyers will be able to attain their dreams with the help of the scholarship.”

    Sic ’em, Allison Dickson and Baylor Law Students!

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