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Charitable gift annuity program spurs ReUnion giving

Posted on Mar 1, 1995

A new program developed by the Gift Planning Office has been very successful in encouraging increased giving among alumni celebrating their 50th, 55th, and 60th Reunions.

With the Charitable Gift Annuity program, each member of those classes received an illustration of the income and tax benefits provided by a $10,000 gift. A volunteer from each class wrote encouraging participation in the annuity program as a way to dramatically increase class giving in honor of the Reunion while helping the College.

To date, Union has received five gifts totaling $78,600, and four more are expected. Bruce Downsbrough '75, director of development, said, “This is a unique program and we are delighted by its success. We hope other members of these classes will consider similar gifts.”

Charitable gift annuities provide four benefits to the donor:

  • current income tax savings; 
  • future estate tax savings; 
  • lifetime income, some of which may be tax-free; 
  • reduction of capital gains tax.
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Gifts, grants, and bequests

Posted on Mar 1, 1995

The College has received more than $365,000 in trust distributions that will support scholarships. The largest of these was from a living trust established by the late Franklyn B. Millham '32. Union, as a remainderman of the trust, received $360,000, and additional distributions are expected.

Ten alumni and friends of the College joined the College's life income programs with a total gift of $187,000. Making gifts to the pooled life income funds were D. Vincent Cerrito '32, Albert K Hill '46, Van der Bogert Shanklin '51, and Albert H. Stevenson '36. Making gifts to the charitable gift annuity program were Harold R Boroson '45, Quintin P. Cole '40, Robert W. Hanson '40, Karen Singer Miller '79, and Sherman W. Parry '40. Mrs. Elizabeth Carrick, a former parent, indicated that Union was a remainder of a charitable trust.

Other recent gifts include:

  • An unrestricted bequest of $8,500 from the estate of Gladys Thompson Guerard, widow of John J. Guerard '13. 
  • A gift of $25,000 from William J. Curtin '82 to establish the William J. Curtin '82 Endowed Scholarship. Preference will be given to students from Potsdam, N.Y. 
  • A gift of $25,000 from Dixie and Joseph F. Furlong 11170 to establish an endowed scholarship in honor of his father, Joseph F. Furlong '42. Preference will be given to students living west of the Rocky Mountains. 
  • A gift of $25,000 to create the Evelyn Killian Endowed Scholarship from her husband, Robert K Kllian '42, and son, Robert K Kllian, Jr. '69. Preference will be given to students from Connecticut. 
  • A commitment of $15,000 from Robert Avon Smith '52 and his wife, Ruth Anna, to build and maintain a fountain in Jackson's Garden.
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NSF grants to enhance research equipment and facilities

Posted on Mar 1, 1995

The College has received nearly $450,000 in matching grants from the National Science Foundation's Academic Research Infrastructure (ARI) program for three projects that will greatly enhance research and research training.

The grants will be used for:

  • the development of an advanced multi-purpose laboratory for optical spectroscopy ($186,260);
  • the acquisition of state-of-the-art equipment for research in electrical engineering ($148,750);
  • the relocation of research laboratories for the Psychology Department ($110,820).

The grants must be matched by contributions from alumni and friends

Linda Cool, dean of the faculty, said that three prestigious NSF grants in one year is unusual.

“This represents a tribute to Union's reputation as a premiere institution for undergraduate research,” she said. “Very few undergraduates in this country will have access to the facilities, equipment, or teaching that we have at Union.”

The grants will further strengthen Union's position as a leading institution for the education of future scientists and enhance the College's ability to recruit underrepresented populations into the sciences, she said.

The foundation's Academic Research Infrastructure program supports the acquisition of
state-of-the-art instrumentation and the modernization and renovation of research facilities. Here are details of the Union grants:

The Center for Advanced Spectroscopic Techniques
is expected to have a major impact on faculty-sponsored undergraduate research.

The center will be the focal point for collaborative research among the sciences and will also make advanced optical equipment and measurement techniques available to students and faculty from across the College. Six faculty members from three
disciplines physics, chemistry, and geology-will lead research projects at the center.

Directors of the project are James McWhirter, John D. MacArthur Assistant Professor of Physics, and Mary Carroll '86, John D. MacArthur Assistant Professor of Chemistry.

A private manufacturer of scientific instrumentation, BOMEM Inc. of Newark, Del., has entered into a partnership with McWhirter to sponsor development of an instrumentation system capable of performing
time resolved spectroscopy. BOMEM will contribute eleven percent of the total cost of the project.

Equipment for high-level design of concurrent systems-The Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department plans to install twelve
high-performance workstations and a central server to provide computing power, rapid prototyping mediums, software, and test equipment to analyze new system design tools and apply them to complex design projects. The new equipment also will allow more student involvement in faculty research projects on computer network protocols.

The department graduates an average of forty undergraduate and twenty-five master's students each year; about one-third do research projects that would be supported by the new equipment. Project directors are David Hemmendinger and Cherrice Traver, associate professors of electrical engineering and computer science, and John Spinelli, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science.

The College will use the NSF grant to fund the relocation of research laboratories from the current Psychology Building to Bailey Hall, part of a
long range plan to provide more adequate teaching and research space for psychology.

Relocating to Bailey Hall will provide much needed space, first-class laboratory facilities, and proximity to other science departments. Faculty will be able to pursue research they cannot do in the current building, and students will have the work space and computer facilities that will enable them to conduct research in close contact with faculty members.

Director of the project is Suzanne Benack, associate professor and chair of the Psychology Department.

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NEH makes a $575,000 library challenge

Posted on Mar 1, 1995

The College received a challenge grant of $575,000 from the National Endowment of the Humanities that will generate nearly $3 million for the renovation and expansion of Schaffer Library.

The NEH challenge grant also will be used to provide multimedia equipment for the refurbished library and to endow acquisition funds for multimedia equipment and materials.

The College will match the grant with private, non-federal donations at a rate of four-to-one-a total of $2.3 million. The final total will be $2.875 million.

President Roger Hull, announcing the grant, said it “is crucial as we begin to create a new library that will be the intellectual center of the campus. Friends of the College will provide a vital role in providing the support that will make this building a reality.”

The NEH announced thirty challenge grants to help institutions in eighteen states. Union received the largest grant of the three recipients in New York State. Of the thirty challenge grants nationwide, Union's was the fourth largest, tied with three other colleges and universities.

Plans are for an expansion and renovation that will include a bibliographic instruction room, a special collections library, a current periodicals room and workspace, a government document center, the Writing Center, an expanded language laboratory, and group and individual study areas.

Barbara Jones, library director, said the key to a successful library in the twenty-first century “will be the ability to provide a gateway to the world's information, since no one library will have everything.

“The new Union library will have the flexibility and the organization to provide access to libraries and other sources of information around the world,” she said.

The cost of the project is estimated at about $15 million, with another $2 million for an endowment fund to support maintenance of the building.

The new library will combine the renovation of the 1960
Schaffer Library with new construction. The 1974 annex will be dismantled and a new three-story facility will be built. Space also will be added to the north and south sides of the 1960 library, and most of the interior will be rebuilt. All told, there will be about 50,000 square feet of new floor space.

Architects for the project are Perry, Dean, Rogers & Partners of Boston.

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Gordon Gould ’41 establishes Physics Professorship

Posted on Mar 1, 1995

Frank J. Studer

Gordon Gould '41, the inventor of the laser, has given the College $1.5 million to establish the Gould Professorship in Physics.

The new professorship honors Frank L. Studer, a former professor of physics at the College who sparked Gould's interest in the physics of light and inspired a love of optics that led to Gould's development of the laser.

President Roger Hull, announcing the gift, said, “This generous gift will help nurture the next generation of scientists, perhaps one of whom will be the next Gordon Gould. We are delighted by it, and we welcome the chair on the eve of our bicentennial.”

The professorship will support a member of the Physics Department; the professor who will occupy the position has not been selected.

Gould was a physics major at Union and did graduate research in optics at Yale, where he taught physics to premed students. He developed the basic concept of the laser in 1957 while he was a doctoral student and research assistant at Columbia University.

He envisioned a way of amplifying light and using the resulting beam to cut and heat substances and measure distances. He dubbed his invention “Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation,” or laser.

Gould now holds licensing agreements with more than 200 laser makers and users, including General Electric, Ford, Toshiba, Spectra-Physics and Coherent the latter two being the world's biggest laser makers.

Gould devoted much of his career to research in optics and was a founder of Optelcom, Inc., an optical communications company from which he retired in 1985. He lives in Breckenridge, Colo.

He was awarded an honorary doctor of science degree by Union in 1978.

Frank J. Studer, the man honored by the Gordon Gould gift, joined the Union faculty in 1930 after teaching at Emory University and the University of Wisconsin. He resigned as a full-time faculty member in the mid-1950s to go to work at the General Electric Company's research laboratory. He remained a research professor at the College for many years, however, advising students on their research projects.

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