A Generation of Support

We wanted to collectively create a legacy fund in his memory dedicated to something that was so important to him—an engineering education.”

In 2013, Eleanor Seaman and her three siblings, Douglas Seaman Jr., Daphne Seaman and Sarah Seaman, gave an extraordinary gift to MSOE. The Douglas Seaman Memorial Endowed Engineering Scholarship was established to honor their late father, Douglas Seaman Sr. At that time, the children wanted to invest a portion into an organization that carried the same values that were so important to their dad, education, technology, engineering, and a vested interest in Milwaukee.

Douglas Seaman Sr. passed away in May 2012 at the age of 91. In the decades before he died, the Milwaukee native called the city home, raising his family and building a successful manufacturing business, Douglas Dynamics. During his lifetime, Douglas Seaman Sr. and his wife established a charitable foundation and were big supporters of a variety of causes, but local manufacturing carried a special affinity.

Soon after the Seaman siblings established the family’s gift, another small coincidence confirmed their decision to support MSOE was the right one.

“We came to learn shortly after the creation of the endowment that my father was a friend and manufacturing peer of Bob Spitzer, president of MSOE from 1977 to 1991. The two were introduced through Young President’s Organization (YPO) and both were contemporaries in their respective Wisconsin based manufacturing companies, Spitzer’s in agribusiness and our father’s in snowplows,” said Eleanor Seaman.

Today the four Seaman siblings are scattered across the country but look forward to returning to Milwaukee each fall to reconnect and meet the students who are benefitting from their incredible gift at MSOE’s annual scholarship luncheon. To be able to speak with the students directly and hear about their studies, interests and aspirations is a great highlight,” said Eleanor Seaman. “We are thrilled to see the scholarship program rolling out exactly as we had envisioned.”

To date, the Douglas Seaman Memorial Endowed Engineering Scholarship has helped shape the futures of eight engineering students, including Caleb Tadysak ’18.

Tadysak was one of the first recipients to receive the scholarship and was exactly what the family had hoped for. A native of Eagle, Wisconsin, Tadysak still remembers the day he received the news.

“I will never forget that day. When I was searching for schools, MSOE's reputation surpassed other universities. With the scholarship, I was finally able to afford to attend. It also meant I could continue my soccer career into college,” said Tadysak.

Tadysak was the recipient all four years (2014-2018) and today is well underway building a career as a mechanical design engineer at Schenck Process, a manufacturing and technology company in Whitewater, Wisconsin.

“Sometimes people ask me if I could reset my college career, where would I go?” said Tadysak. “Without a doubt, I always say MSOE. And I owe that all to the Seaman family.”

“We feel so fortunate to provide a gift in a field so close to dad’s heart, in a community where his manufacturing business flourished, and in a city where we were all raised.”