Couple gives $2.2 million to establish faculty chair in geosciences

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Two anonymous donors have made a $2.2 million gift to the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences’ Department of Geosciences to create a faculty chair. The couple is remembering Penn State through a bequest that will leave a lasting legacy and support the department’s work in geochemistry. Both of these individuals hold doctorates and have an intimate understanding of the need for faculty support.

“Penn State is internationally recognized as a leader in the field of geochemistry, with cutting-edge research, effective educational programs, and strong societal outreach at the intersection of geological processes and the chemistry of rocks, minerals, ocean, atmosphere and life,” said Lee Kump, head of the Department of Geosciences. “Having an endowed chair in this area will ensure that we can attract and retain the absolute leaders in the field and support their research and that of their students in perpetuity.”

Bill Easterling, dean of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences stated, “An endowed chair is at the apex of university professorships in terms of prestige and opportunity. It allows us to bring to Penn State an individual who is among the very best scholars in the world, in this case, in geochemistry.  By providing a guaranteed source of funds for research projects and curriculum development, the chair can ensure its holder the resources to maintain the highest level of teaching and discovery. The college and the department are very proud to have this endowed chair and grateful to the anonymous donor for this selfless contribution.”

The couple’s gift will contribute to the University’s For the Future:  The Campaign for Penn State Students, directed toward a shared vision of Penn State as the most comprehensive, student-centered research university in America. The endowed chair will not only build faculty strength at the University but will provide additional funds for student support, all while expanding the department’s research and educational offerings.

The For the Future Campaign is the most ambitious effort of its kind in Penn State’s history, with the goal of securing $2 billion by 2014.

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Last Updated May 10, 2013