New endowment honors retiring Engineering Dean Wormley

Curtis Chan
April 25, 2013

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — A new endowment honoring retiring College of Engineering Dean David N. Wormley and his wife, Shirley, will continue the dean's legacy of educating future engineers.

The endowment, called the David and Shirley Wormley Excellence Fund for the Support of World Class Engineers, is designed to help students become "world class engineers" — professionals who are solidly grounded, technically broad, globally engaged, ethical, innovative, excellent collaborators and visionary leaders.

Specifically, the Wormley fund will support new and enhanced programs, courses and scholarship opportunities for students.

The endowment's creation was led by the College of Engineering's advancement committee and the Leonhard Center for the Enhancement of Engineering Education board. Industrial engineering alumnus Harold Marcus and his wife, Inge, of Olympia, Wash., were also major contributors to the fund.

"Under David's leadership, Penn State has educated many of the top engineers working around the world today. Although he's retiring, we felt strongly that his legacy in educating world-class engineers should be celebrated and continued with this endowment," said Joseph Monkowski, advancement committee chair.

Monkowski said the Wormley endowment could help fund experiential learning opportunities, travel expenses for students' study abroad, professional development activities, and course development and enhancement.

Wormley joined the College of Engineering as dean in 1992. Prior to coming to Penn State, he served as a faculty member, department head of mechanical engineering and associate dean of engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He earned his bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees from M.I.T.

The Harold and Inge Marcus Dean of Engineering announced his retirement Feb. 1 and will step down this summer.

Under Wormley, the College of Engineering enrolls 6,800 undergraduate students and more than 1,300 graduate students in highly regarded programs that annually rate among the best in national and international rankings.

Since Wormley became dean, College of Engineering research expenditures have grown from $32 million to $131 million and the College's endowment has increased from $14 million to $173 million.

He has maintained a prominent national profile, having served on the National Academy of Engineering Committee on Assessing the Capacity of U.S. Engineering Research. Wormley was chair of both the National Science Foundation Engineering Directorate Advisory Committee and the Executive Committee of the National Research Council Transportation Research Board. He chaired the National Research Council's Committee for a Study of a Motor Vehicle Rollover Rating System and served as president of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE). Wormley was elected an honorary member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) in 2010.

A fellow of the ASME and the ASEE, he has received a NASA Certificate of Recognition, an ASME Dynamic Systems and Control Education Award, and the ASME Lewis Moody Award.

  • David and Shirley Wormley with framed fund certificate

    The new David and Shirley Wormley Excellence Fund for the Support of World Class Engineers will continue the legacy of retiring Dean David N. Wormley. The fund will support new and enhanced programs, courses and scholarship opportunities for engineering students.

    IMAGE: Penn State

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Last Updated April 25, 2013