Hiram College

Galen Roush, 1914 yearbook

As the cost of higher education increases, more and more students are looking for scholarships to help them finance a college education. Students who might have once imagined a private liberal arts education as being beyond their means can think again. A generous gift of $2 million to Hiram College will now help many students turn this dream into a degree. The endowed funds, granted by an anonymous donor and earmarked for student scholarships, were given in honor of Galen J. Roush, a 1915 alumnus of Hiram College and founder of Roadway Express, formerly headquartered in Akron, Ohio.

“A Hiram College education changes lives and sets students on a clear path to personal and professional success,” said President Lori Varlotta, Ph.D. “Hiram has a proud history of serving students on all points of the socio-economic spectrum. I am thrilled that the Galen J. Roush scholarship will allow us to serve those who would otherwise not be able to afford the high-quality education we offer here.”

The Galen J. Roush Endowed Scholarship will allow Hiram College to offer scholarships to students who need financial assistance in rounding out their overall financial aid package.

“The Roushes were a legacy family at Hiram, and the College was vitally important to them,” said Dr. Varlotta. “We appreciate immensely the anonymous donor whose gift will allow more students and families to experience the positive impact this education made in the lives of many in the Roush family.”

Galen J. Roush earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Hiram in 1915. His sisters, Prudence (1917), Esther (1919) and Helen (1923), and his brother, Carroll (1926) were also Hiram College graduates, along with a niece and nephew.

Galen served on the Hiram College Board of Trustees from 1950 until his death in 1976 and was one of the Charter Fellows of the Garfield Society of Hiram College. Membership in the Garfield Society is one of the highest honors given by the College to individuals who have demonstrated significant professional achievement and whose efforts have substantially enriched their communities.

After graduating from Hiram College, Galen earned a Juris Doctorate from the Franklin Thomas Backus Law School at Western Reserve University in 1922. He practiced law for several years, leaving the profession in 1930 to join his brother, Carroll, in establishing Roadway Express. As this trucking firm grew in structure and size its services began to rival those offered by the railroads. The company eventually secured exclusive rights to routes that paved the way for Roadway’s expansion in the post-WWII era. Roadway became one of the nation’s largest motor freight carriers before merging with Yellow Transit Co. in 2003 and operating under the combined name of YRC Freight in 2012.

In 1967, he founded the GAR Foundation with his wife, Ruth to support the needs of those in the greater-Akron community. GAR has since awarded over $225 million in grants to nonprofit organizations who advance in the areas of education, basic needs and independence, arts and culture, and civic enhancement. The Foundation previously established an endowed scholarship at Hiram College in 1988 in honor of Galen J. Roush.