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02-03-2009

Procter & Gamble Funds Student Success at Clarkson University

The Procter & Gamble Fund has selected Clarkson University to receive four Higher Education Grants of $10,000 each to better prepare students for successful careers.

The grants will enable first-year chemistry students to solve real sustainability problems, allow business students in need to partake in a global learning experience, help to retain more students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), and initiate an innovation minor in engineering.

"I am very pleased that Clarkson was so successful by gaining funding for a record four proposals," said Lisa A. Napolione, general manager, Global Research & Development and Clarkson alumna. "This is a very significant achievement for the university. These programs adeptly met the Procter & Gamble Fund Higher Education Grant mission of supporting cutting edge curriculum development to enable tomorrow’s needs in step changing approaches in global research & development and business strategies. These new programs will enable Clarkson students to be well positioned for success as industry changes and evolves more rapidly than ever."

"We are grateful to Procter & Gamble for this funding and for supporting these innovative initiatives," said Clarkson University President Tony Collins. "It is especially significant that our faculty submissions were selected for four of these awards with grants going to each of our schools."

The first grant will purchase laboratory equipment, which 100 first-year students in chemistry, biomolecular science, biology and chemical engineering will use to study possible energy crops and waste materials to assess their potential as sustainable fuel sources. This direct involvement in energy research will provide the students a better understanding of how society makes its carbon footprint and impacts the environment. In its second phase, the faculty hope to continue this research into sustainability topics with 500 non-science majors.

The next grant will provide funding for five to six business students in financial need to participate in a global experience course. After classroom study of the culture, language and society of another region, the students will travel to Western Europe, Latin America, India, China, Africa or Southeast Asia for a two- to three-week learning experience.

Another grant will fund an assessment of students’ performance in first-year physics and calculus courses, with the goal of understanding how better to retain students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs. The study may lead to better advising for incoming students or an integrated math and physics course.

The final grant will help to establish an innovation minor for engineering students with the goal of infusing leading-edge business skills into student learning. The new minor will enable majors in chemical, mechanical, electrical, civil or other engineering specializations to also graduate with minor in innovation in four years.

Founded in 1952 by the Procter & Gamble Company, the P&G Fund provides funding for philanthropic activities, with particular emphasis on bringing P&G’s "Live, Learn and Thrive" corporate cause alive in P&G communities around the world.

Clarkson University launches leaders into the global economy. One in six alumni already leads as a CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. Located just outside the Adirondack Park in Potsdam, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university for undergraduates with select graduate programs in signature areas of academic excellence directed toward the world’s pressing issues. Through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and health sciences, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo, and connect discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Michael P. Griffin, director of News & Digital Content Services, at 315-268-6716 or mgriffin@clarkson.edu.]

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