To honor her husband’s memory and his commitment to NIACC, Donna DePrenger established the Donald K. DePrenger Memorial Scholarship. Donald was a chemistry instructor at the College from 1965 to 1986. The scholarship is designated for a full-time sophomore student majoring in chemistry or taking chemistry and majoring in another science area.
Donald was very committed to NIACC and his students. Donna said he organized picnics in the park for chemistry students for at 10 of his 20 years at NIACC. He also welcomed students into his home who had questions of needed assistance with chemistry. Donald’s ancestors were from Holland, and he was born in the Dutch community of Leighton, IA. He graduated from Pella High School and attended the University of Iowa prior to World War II, where he served in the 10th Armored Division at the Battle of the Bulge. Following the war, Donald married Donna and continued education. He graduated from Central College in Pella, Iowa and earned an M.S. degree through the National Science Foundation form the University of Northern Iowa. After beginning his career at NIACC, Donald continued to study during the summers and he earned many hours toward his doctorate degree.
The DePrenger family has numerous ties to NIACC. Donald taught at NIACC for 21 years. Donna and their two children, Dan and Annie, all graduated from NIACC. Since then, two granddaughters, Brandy and Stacy, also have graduated from NIACC.
Donna, who taught piano at the College for 16 years, said, “Donald was very dedicated to the College…all day, night and summer. It was like a family in that we were very cohesive, extremely supportive and interested in each other.”
“Teaching was Donald’s main thrust. NIACC was a very major part of his being,” said Donna. Donald’s memory will continue to live in the chemistry students of the future though his memorial scholarship.