Faculty and staff in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences have made financial commitments that will strengthen programs and benefit students in the college. The gifts come on the eve of the kick-off of the public phase of the University's capital campaign, For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students, scheduled for the weekend of April 23-25 at University Park. "The timing of these commitments could not be better," said John Romano, volunteer chair of the faculty and staff giving component of the For the Future campaign. "They are marvelous examples of giving back by our own faculty and staff -- people who see Penn State's needs first hand -- and will surely inspire alumni and friends to participate in the campaign."
Sarah Donaldson loved Penn State. So much that after earning two degrees at the University -- a bachelor's degree in animal bioscience and a master's degree in pathobiology -- she chose to begin her career as a research cellular biologist with a job in the College of Agricultural Sciences. She was working in the field of molecular epidemiology, and engaged to be married, when a car accident cut short her life in June 2008 at the age of 28. Now, those who were closest to her have decided to honor Sarah's life by helping other students attend the University she cared so much about. Her family and friends have contributed $50,000 to endow the Sarah Christine Donaldson Memorial Trustee Scholarship in the College of Agricultural Sciences, which will aid undergraduates who have financial need. First preference for the scholarship will go to students in animal bioscience.
The nation's largest grower of wild blueberries -- a crop that relies on honeybees for pollination -- has thrown its support behind Penn State research aimed at finding solutions to the health crisis facing the nation's honeybee colonies. Ed Flanagan, president of Wyman's of Maine, visited Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences Thursday (March 26) to present a check for $50,000 to support research on Colony Collapse Disorder, or CCD, a mysterious ailment that has led to the disappearance of up to one-third of U.S. commercial honeybee hives since late 2006.
Last year, Penn State and all-natural, superpremium ice cream manufacturer Haagen-Dazs teamed up to investigate Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), a mysterious ailment that has decimated honeybee colonies across the United States. This year, Haagen-Dazs has expanded that partnership with a second gift of $125,000 to support ongoing and additional research and educational programs related to honeybees.
The Arboretum at Penn State continues to develop, thanks to gifts from University alumni and friends. Among the most recent commitments is a $120,000 pledge from James and Lynn Ramage for the Arboretum's marsh meadow, part of the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens. The meadow will be named for the Ramages in recognition of their generosity. "When Lynn and I travel, we make it a point to visit various gardens and arboretums," James Ramage explained. "Penn State is one of the few land-grant universities without an arboretum, so when we heard that it was going to develop this arboretum, we were delighted. And we like the idea of giving back to the University."