CHENEY, Wash. - Eastern Washington University's Computer Science Alumni Endowment has reached the $25,000 mark, thanks to a 20-month fundraising effort that reflects the growing interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs.
Starting in the spring of 2011, computer science graduates were asked to give $1,000 back to the department to create an endowment to "pay it forward" for the next computer science student at Eastern.
The fundraising effort resulted in 20 gifts or pledges that ranged from $100 all the way up to $30,000, with many current faculty members contributing to the endowment.
"It is clear this nation must make STEM a top priority because such an education creates critical thinkers who will become the next generation of innovators who will sustain our economy," said Paul Schimpf, professor of computer science at EWU. "This endowment is an important part of EWU's support for worthy students wishing to pursue a STEM education in the area of computing, which is projected by the U.S. Department of Labor and Industries to be the highest demand STEM field through 2018."
In addition to the $25,000 raised so far, there is an additional $81,000 in pledges to be collected.
The endowment will create scholarships to partially fund tuition for students pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science each year, starting in the fall of 2013. The goal is to eventually fully fund tuition for one year for as many computer science students as possible.
For information on how to contribute to the Computer Science Alumni Endowment, contact Stuart Steiner at firstname.lastname@example.org or 509.359.4296.