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Andrea Duria Nugent Memorial Scholarship

Dick, Andrea and Michelle Nugent. Photo courtesy of donors.

Dick Nugent and his daughter, Michelle Nugent '13 (Community Arts M.F.A.), began the year recovering from the tragic and unexpected loss of their beloved wife and mother, Andrea, who passed away on April 26, 2016.

To honor Andrea's life and legacy, her family established the Andrea Duria Nugent Memorial Scholarship, an endowed scholarship supporting undergraduate students pursuing any program at MICA. This scholarship will have special consideration for students who have family ties to the Philippines, Andrea's country of origin, or alternatively, Southeast Asia.

Andrea Nugent was born in Palompon, Leyte, Philippines in 1943 and was raised by her mother, who died when Andrea was in her early teens. Andrea would later relocate to Hong Kong where she spent the next two decades as a dedicated and caring au pair. This position granted her the ability to travel the world and take in many new experiences.

In 1984, Andrea met Dick through a mutual friend and the two would marry soon thereafter. She became a first-time mother at the age of 44. Despite not having the opportunity to obtain a formal education past middle school, Andrea had a deep dedication to learning, teaching herself several languages as well as how to expertly sew, crochet and quilt. When Andrea's hands were not creating these crafts, they were active in her kitchen or tending to her flower and vegetable gardens. In addition to expressing herself, Andrea used her artwork to show her love and thanks to those closest to her.

"In appreciation of folks who valued her friendship, she'd freely give them 'pieces of her heart' in the form of handmade and instant 'heirlooms,' which included intricately detailed quilts scarves, sweaters and the like...never expecting anything in return," Dick shared. He adds that her "warm and giving personality" attracted people from all walks of life.

Andrea understood the value of a formal education and how it could benefit one's life, encouraging her daughter to pursue her chosen path of the arts. To that end, Michelle received a B.F.A. from The College of New Jersey in 2009 and subsequently an M.F.A. at MICA. Michelle considers her mother's desire to learn a major influence when she was growing up, inspiring her to work her hardest at pursuing her dreams during her time in school and beyond.

"My mother always stressed and encouraged hard work and doing your best in anything and everything that you do. She got her own reward from supporting others," Michelle said. Through the creation of the Andrea Duria Nugent Memorial Scholarship, Andrea's generosity, warmth and drive will be felt by future generations of artists. Michelle adds that she hopes Andrea's personal story of success from humble beginnings will be a true inspiration for others to strive, no matter what their circumstances.

This page was last updated on 03/03/2017.