Release Date: June 1, 2004
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Several local business leaders recently surprised former University at Buffalo President Steven B. Sample with a scholarship named on his behalf, an honor they felt is befitting the visionary leader noted for his legendary support of scholarship at the highest levels.
Donors to the $125,000 endowed scholarship fund included Jeremy M. Jacobs '60, chair and CEO of Delaware North Companies, Inc.; Stanford Lipsey, president and publisher, The Buffalo News; Robert G. Wilmers, chair and CEO, M&T Bank, and the directors of Moog, Inc.
The scholarship will pay tuition and fees for four years for an undergraduate student who is in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and has been admitted as a freshman to UB's Distinguished Honors Scholars program. The scholarship will be awarded every four years, anticipated to begin in either Fall 2005 or 2006.
"I am honored and delighted," Sample said, "that Jerry Jacobs, Stan Lipsey, Bob Wilmers and Bob Brady, representing the Moog board, have endowed this scholarship in my name. What an outstanding way this is to recognize the wonderful experiences that Kathryn and I had during our nine years in Buffalo. I am proud of the fact that, through this endowed scholarship, my name will be permanently linked with the University of Buffalo, the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the honors program."
Jacobs, chair of the UB Council, took the lead in developing the fund. He announced its establishment last month at a dinner recognizing UB commencement award winners and honorary degree recipients, including Sample, who received the Chancellor Charles P. Norton Medal, the university's highest award, at UB's 158th general commencement ceremony.
"Steve Sample had a vision of UB that included raising its overall level of scholastic achievement and recognition as such by the public," Jacobs said, speaking on behalf of the donors. "It was under his guidance that UB became a member of the Association of American Universities, a highly prestigious organization whose members include the country's top-level public and private educational institutions.
"Today we continue to benefit from the foundation that Sample laid, and Professor William R. Greiner followed, as student applicant numbers grow along with increased averages in test scores and class rank," Jacobs added.
UB President John B. Simpson noted the generosity of the donors and the stature of Sample. "Dr. Steven B. Sample's contributions to the University at Buffalo have been both broad in scope and lasting in effect. I can't think of a more fitting acknowledgment of Steve's dedication to UB and to public higher education itself than a vehicle by which future generations of talented young engineers may prosper, learn and grow."
He continued: "I applaud the vision and generosity of our UB Council Chair Jeremy M. Jacobs, as well as Stanford Lipsey, Robert G. Wilmers, and Robert T. Brady and the entire Moog Board of Directors, in developing this outstanding tribute to Steve's legacy at UB. These longstanding friends of UB have my thanks, as well as the gratitude of the entire university community, for demonstrating once again with this special gift their leadership in support of UB."
Jennifer A. McDonough, UB vice president for university advancement, offered high praise for the four donors. "We are grateful for the generosity of these four outstanding community leaders," she said. "They are business professionals who value and support scholarship, understanding that an investment in the university and its top-tier students benefits both the campus and the community."
Thanks also were expressed by Mark H. Karwan, dean of the UB School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.
"I am grateful to the donors and can think of no greater distinction than to have an engineering student selected as a Steven B. Sample Distinguished Honors Scholar," said Karwan. "Steve Sample is a tremendous role model for our students, having gone from an engineering background to his prominent leadership roles at two nationally known public research universities."
UB's 12th president from 1982-91, Sample raised the university's scholarship sights, expanded its research activity and played a leading role in securing NCAA Division I membership.
President of the University of Southern California since March 1991, he is a noted engineer, inventor and educator. In 2001, he authored an acclaimed book on leadership, "The Contrarian's Guide to Leadership." During Sample's presidency, Time magazine named USC its 2000 College of the Year, and in 2003, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in tribute to his career accomplishments.
The Norton Medal is given in public recognition of a person who has, in Norton's words, "performed some great thing which is identified with Buffalo…is truly great and ennobling, and which dignifies the performer and Buffalo in the eyes of the world."
At general commencement on May 9, UB also conferred an honorary degree on Wilmers, a recognized international financial leader and one of the scholarship donors.