University of Cincinnati engineering alumnus and Vice President and Project Director at Sargent & Lundy, Denny DeMoss, shared a story over the summer that changed my way of thinking. Denny told me about two experiences he had with salmon fishing. The first time he went fishing there were eight fishing lines tossed into the water, and by the end of the day three to four fish were caught. On Denny’s next salmon fishing trip there were 40 lines tossed into the water, and by the end of the day around two dozen fish were caught. What Denny told me next was that no one pole caught more than two fish, that with more fishing poles came more opportunity. On the first trip there were missed opportunities because there were less fishing poles.
This story provides a valuable lesson and also describes why Denny gives back to the University of Cincinnati. He wants every student to have opportunities and he’s helping to supply the poles. Denny has a joint scholarship with Tom Beringer, another UC graduate who is also a Chicagoan for Cincy. Although as Denny says, “It is not giving back but passing it along,” his story shows that donating to the University is the right thing to do.
Denny got his BSNE in Nuclear Engineering from the College of Engineering in 1977 from UC. Even though engineering is a demanding major, Denny still made time to spend Tuesday nights at his fraternity house Theta Chi, play intramural sports, participate in Homecoming, and most importantly, just hang out with his friends at the same Skyline on Clifton where the current undergraduate class still hangs out.
Denny’s advice to current undergraduates at UC is to “Dream a little bigger than you think.” He says although it is easy to stay where you are, one should explore a little more and learn to do new things. Taking advantage of new opportunities will help make you a well-rounded person.
Of course Denny sets the perfect example when he passes on what I thought was the most important advice: to do charitable things.
- Robert Fealy, BBA ’73
Chicago Campaign Committee Chair