Gift from alumnus will support student activities in the College of Ag Sciences

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — An alumnus of Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences has created a new endowment fund that will support students' participation in activities and enrichment opportunities.

Bob Robinson, of Tunkhannock, has given $25,000 to establish the Robert K. Robinson Fund for Student Engagement. Robinson also made a commitment to give $1,250 per year over five years to boost the fund's income and included a provision in his estate plan to provide a $50,000 bequest that will enhance the principal of the endowment.

The fund will provide financial support for activities that engage undergraduate students in the College of Agricultural Sciences with faculty, staff, alumni and other students. Proceeds from the fund may be used to cover expenses for student participation and attendance at competitions and professional-development activities.

"Students who participate in activities and engage outside the classroom develop knowledge and skills that they may not get from their coursework," said Tracy Hoover, the college's associate dean for undergraduate education. "Funding to help cover the costs of these activities often is scarce, so we're grateful to Bob Robinson for helping to make it possible for our students to enrich their education through these opportunities."

Robinson noted that he came from a small town and never felt that he had enough money to be involved in a variety of activities. "I cherished the time and money I did spend on my FFA activities, but I wish I had been able to do more," he said. "My hope is that this engagement fund will allow future students to explore a myriad of opportunities to pursue their dreams."

Robinson received a bachelor's degree in agricultural education from Penn State in 1966. Now retired, he was a teacher in the Tunkhannock Area School District. He has been active in the College of Agricultural Sciences Alumni Society.

Robinson is very proud of his two sons, Todd and Patrick. Todd is a 1995 graduate of the College of Agricultural Sciences with a degree in wildlife and fisheries science and now works as a fish biologist in the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Patrick chose to explore his entrepreneurial passions and is the founder of an online antique and sports memorabilia website, hotgavel.com. He also manages a commercial cleaning company.

Penn State's alumni and friends are invaluable partners in fulfilling the University's land-grant mission of education, research and service. Private gifts from alumni and friends enrich the experiences of students both in and out of the classroom; expand the research and teaching capacity of our faculty; enhance the University's ability to recruit and retain top students and faculty; and help to ensure that students from every economic background have access to a Penn State education.

The University's colleges and campuses are now enlisting the support of alumni and friends to advance a range of unit-specific initiatives.

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Last Updated February 17, 2016