Why I Give: Dr. Mark Perko ’78

“I give to Kentucky Wesleyan in appreciation for the building blocks the College gave me for my career. Giving back is repayment for what Wesleyan did for me. Wesleyan was definitely the right choice, and I would do it again. I have great memories of my college years and a lot of gratitude.”

Cuyuhoga Falls, Ohio

B.S., Magna Cum Laude, Chemistry and Biology, Kentucky Wesleyan College, 1978
        Induction to The Order of Oak and Ivy, 1978
D.M.D., University of Louisville School of Dentistry, 1983

Married to Linda for 33 years
Children: Charlotte, Eric and Zachary; Two grandchildren, expecting a third in December

Why did you choose Kentucky Wesleyan?
“The son of my high school counselor attended Wesleyan, and he recommended the College. I wanted to attend a small college, and Wesleyan was just right for me.”

How did your Wesleyan experience impact your life?
“I remember the commitment of the faculty to their students and their willingness to take the time to help individuals. The one-on-one attention meant a lot. Some of my classes had only two or three students, and that was amazing.

“The science faculty were exceptional. I can’t say enough about them.  Drs. Connor, Magnuson, Flachskam and Dalzell were the best, as was Professor Davenport, whose advice was a turning point for me my first semester. He said, ‘This is a college, not a high school. Step it up and start working.’ That woke me up, and I needed it.

“I also remember my history professor, Dr. Dan Bradshaw – what a great guy. The College was such a close-knit community, and I’m sure it still is today.

“After graduation, I worked at Field Packing and then at Methodist Hospital in Henderson. Then I entered dental school and realized how well Wesleyan had prepared me. I remain grateful for that preparation today. It was tough, and in the first few months, 14 of my classmates walked out.

“I graduated from dental school in 1983 and opened a family dental practice in Akron, Ohio, in 1984. Wesleyan provided the foundation for what I’ve been able to do, and I’m still grateful for Professor Davenport’s wake-up call.”

How do you spend your time away from your dental practice?
“In addition to spending time with our adult children and their families, Linda and I love to travel and do a lot of hiking, especially to our beautiful national parks.

“I look forward to returning to Kentucky Wesleyan for a visit one of these days. That will be a special trip.”