LITTLE ROCK — The Schueck/McCarty family has pledged $1 million to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute to support its efforts in achieving National Cancer Institute Designation.
The family is passionate about UAMS achieving NCI Designation and sees their gift as having an immediate impact toward reaching that goal, said Marge Schueck.
“As our family has witnessed, the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute is a lifeline for countless individuals in our state and region,” Schueck said. “We are grateful for the opportunity to help UAMS reach this milestone and achieve NCI Designation.”
NCI Designation is a highly competitive assessment process during which cancer centers must demonstrate outstanding depth and breadth of high-quality cancer research and treatment. Receiving designation brings substantial benefits, including the ability to access federal research funding and offer clinical trials not available to non-designated centers. It also is expected to result in a $72 million economic impact on Arkansas and create approximately 1,500 new jobs over five years.
There are 70 NCI-designated cancer centers in 36 states across the country, with the closest to Arkansas being in Memphis (pediatrics only), Dallas and Oklahoma City.
“We at the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute are so grateful to the Schueck-McCarty family for this incredible gift,” said Michael Birrer, M.D., Ph.D., vice chancellor and director of the Cancer Institute. “Achieving NCI Designation will place the Cancer Institute among the top 2 percent of cancer centers in the country. This gift will accelerate our progress to gain access to clinical trials and new therapies that our patients need.”
Originally from St. Louis, Marge and Tom Schueck moved to Arkansas and built a significant steel business. Tom founded Lexicon, Inc., a heavy construction conglomerate, which includes construction management, fabrication, erection, mechanical installation and plant maintenance for heavy industrial, commercial and roadway projects. Tom died March 3, 2020, but his compassion and influence live on in his family. The Schueck family has given more than $2 million to UAMS to date. Marge began her engagement with UAMS through volunteering at the Cancer Institute gift shop. Marge and Tom have two children, Jennifer Schueck McCarty and Patrick Schueck. Patrick was diagnosed with cancer at 20 and is a three-time survivor.
UAMS is the state’s only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute and Institute for Digital Health & Innovation.