On March 1, 2021, Michael "Moog" Aguilar, Director of Esports & Co-Curricular Innovation, Kara "Kel" Brightwell, Community Outreach Coordinator of The OU Esports Club, and Ricky "Timmy Skorcher" McNeal, Founder and CEO of HXC Gaming Events presented a tribute jersey set for Forest "Solidus" Sharp to his mother Gretchen "Momma Solidus" Evans in front of Evans Hall at The University of Oklahoma on behalf of the entire community.
The Solidus Scholarships and Awards
Thanks to a gracious initial donation we knew immediately what needed to be done. So we set out to create a namesake fund to a story we learned about in 2018, 2 years after we started our roadmap. Hearing the story of Solidus inspired us to establish his legacy and immortalize this Sooner who had been after the very thing that started our energy despite not knowing about him at the start. We are proud and humbled to introduce this legacy establishing namesake collection, The Forest Dayne "Solidus" Sharp Fund, Scholarships, and Awards.
SUPPORT THE SOLIDUS FUND
With the creation of the Solidus Fund, scholarships & awards we have also created the first 501(c)3 contributions portal 100% aimed at creating opportunities for students.
About Forest Dayne "Solidus" Sharp
Forest Dayne “Solidus” Sharp was a huge influence in the gaming community at OU, in Norman and across the state of Oklahoma. He is largely recognized as the primary founding energy behind one of Oklahoma’s premier gaming events called Super Bit Wars which has existed since 2012. Forest personified the same energy that founded the current developments of The University of Oklahoma’s gaming and esports programs focusing on grassroots community growth for inclusion as priority. Forest graduated from The University of Oklahoma in 2007 with a Bachelors of Arts in Anthropology and was finishing his thesis for his Master’s degree in the History of Science which was posthumously awarded in 2012. Forest passed in 2011 at the age of 28.
Context & Tribute
In March 2018, we partnered with HXC Gaming Events, a current partner of ours since 2017. We learned about a fighting gaming community (FGC) tournament that was birthed on OU's campus way before we even started development. During the event this tribute video played to which Momma Solidus was also in attendance. This was the first time since it's start that Super Bit Wars had returned to it's birth place at OU. After hearing this story presented like this, it was clear to us Solidus was the future name of our first scholarship offerings. In February 2021, we made it a reality. Please take a moment to learn about this Sooner who was way ahead of the curve and the energy he established, not only at OU, but for the entire state. In the same spirit of our development, it was community that taught us about our own legacy and further solidified who we needed to be and stay at our core.
This video was aired at 2018's 6th Annual Super Bit Wars by HXC Gaming Events. With permission of Ricky "TimmySkorcher" McNeal of HXC(featured) and Gretchen "Momma Solidus" Evans(featured), we felt the original tribute was perfect as is.
The Solidus Awards (as of 1.3.24)
As of Spring 2024 all Solidus Awards and Scholarships have been paused while we gear up for further curriculum and venue development as we establish new fundraising strategies and program intention at the departmental level.
All student issued scholarships since initial awarding in 2021 came from student and staff fundraising and new strategies to get to sustainment are being developed currently. Stay tuned as we work to bring these back in a very big way in the future.
However, if YOU contribute to the Solidus Fund we will still award students who are high achieving academically or are notably impactful to our community. You can also put what you'd like your contribution to be used for in the comments and we'll make sure it is used as intended.
Funding for operations, staffing, and other budgets will always come from other sources. The Solidus Fund is purely for student impact.