Cynthia A. Pfeifer-Hill establishes natural science scholarship

July 1, 2019

The Loyd V. Hill and Cynthia A. Pfeifer-Hill Natural Science Scholarship was established in May 2019 to support students majoring or minoring in any natural science field and who also demonstrate a love of learning in any of these fields.

“Both Loyd and Cynthia made significant contributions to Northwestern during their teaching careers, and their impact will continue through this scholarship,” said Dr. Janet Cunningham, President of Northwestern Oklahoma State University. “It is a fitting legacy for two outstanding educators.”

Dr. Loyd Hill earned a bachelor’s degree at Oklahoma A&M College in Stillwater before serving as a Flight Navigator in the U.S. Air Force. After his honorable discharge from the Air Force, he obtained his master’s and Ph.D. degrees in plant science and agronomy from Oklahoma State University. While working on these degrees, Loyd began his teaching at Northwestern Oklahoma State University as an instructor in the Department of Agriculture. Following his time at Northwestern, Loyd worked in several agricultural-based positions, obtaining seven patents.

Dr. Cynthia Pfeifer-Hill earned a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry at Pennsylvania State University in 1985. She obtained her Ph.D. in veterinary physiology and pharmacology at Purdue University, Ind. She conducted postdoctoral research at New Mexico State University and the University of Pittsburgh Medical School. Cynthia began her Northwestern career in 1995 in the Department of Natural Science to teach Human Anatomy, Physiology, Pathophysiology, Biochemistry and Cell and Molecular Biology. She also served as interim dean for several years and department chair of the Department of Natural Science for 10 years. She oversaw a major science building renovation and helped start the Heartland BEST Robotics program. Cynthia also holds the Dr. Anna B. Fisher Endowed Biology Chair at Northwestern. In 2019, Cynthia retired after 24 years at Northwestern.

Cynthia and Loyd first met at Northwestern in 1995 as biology faculty colleagues and soon found their common passion for teaching and the biological sciences. They married on May 23, 1998.

Applicants for the Loyd V. Hill and Cynthia A. Pfeifer-Hill Natural Science Scholarship must be full-time continuing students pursuing a Biology, Chemistry or Physics major or minor with a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average. Applicants must also be active in a science club. To be considered, students must complete the scholarship application form through the Financial Aid Office on any Northwestern campus. This scholarship can be used for University-related expenses including tuition, books, fees, and room and board.

For more information on the Loyd V. Hill and Cynthia A. Pfeifer-Hill Natural Science Scholarship, or about investing in Northwestern students, contact Skeeter Bird, CEO, Northwestern Foundation & Alumni Association, at 580-327-8598 or at

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