Coca-Cola Foundation gift to support graduate fellowships

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Coca-Cola Foundation gift to support graduate fellowships

The Coca-Cola Foundation has presented a $50,000 gift to the university's Increased Representation in Science (IRIS) program, a new initiative to support graduate fellowships in science for women and minorities.

"The Coca-Cola Foundation funds programs that deal with all aspects of education," said John R. Alm, chief financial officer of Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. and a 1973 graduate of UB. "The IRIS program fits in with the foundation's mission to provide assistance for educational opportunities that make significant differences."

UB President William R. Greiner said, "By supporting this program, the Coca-Cola Foundation will strengthen our university's efforts to recruit the very best and most talented women and members of minority groups for graduate study in scientific and technical fields. Master's- and doctorate-level preparation in science and technology is increasingly essential for people who will lead in the knowledge-based, high-tech economy of the next century," he added.

UB's Office of Public Service and Urban Affairs and Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics will coordinate recruitment of master's- and doctorate-level fellows. In addition to UB undergraduates, fellowship recipients will be selected from other State University of New York institutions, as well as historically women's and African-American colleges and universities.

The Office of Public Service and Urban Affairs established the IRIS program to increase the level of participation in the sciences by women, African-Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans.

With additional philanthropic support, the university will establish summer research internships for undergraduates and outreach programs to generate interest in science among elementary and secondary students.

Alm, a board member of the Coca-Cola Foundation, is an accounting alumnus of the UB School of Management. He completed his undergraduate degree at UB following service in the U.S. Air Force, which he joined in 1968. He was named to his current post at Coca-Cola in 1992.