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NMSU gift supports first chemical, materials engineering Endowed Chair to recruit top teaching talent

Two new investments in the College of Engineering will support an endowed chair for its fast-growing program, the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering.

Group of people holding giant check made out for $50,000.
At the Colorado Alumni Chapter Aggie Social Nov. 9 with New Mexico State University Chancellor Garrey Carruthers, Frank and Jennifer Seidel along with family present the NMSU Foundation with $50,000 to kick off fundraising for the first-ever CHME Endowed Chair. From left are Hailey Seidel, Frank Seidel, Jennifer Seidel, Garrey Carruthers, Caroline Seidel, Si Trujillo and granddaughters Poppy and Suzy.

Frank and Jennifer Seidel along with Jacob Perea pledged a combined $75,000 to launch fundraising for the distinguished position geared to assist New Mexico State University recruit top teaching talent to the department.

“Jennifer and I are pleased to kick off the fundraising for this critical venture by investing $50,000 in the new CHME Endowed Chair,” said Frank Seidel, a 1982 chemical engineering graduate. “It is our hope that this will lead to additional support by other alumni, which will ultimately benefit students and faculty in NMSU’s Chemical and Materials Engineering program. In fact, just today, we received another generous investment of $25,000 from Jacob Perea, and I’m personally asking a number of alumni and friends to join us.”

These gifts come after continued support from the Seidel duo who have invested significantly in the program since 2013 through the Seidel Brew Lab and a CHME endowed scholarship for students.

The CHME Academy, a 10-member board chaired by Frank Seidel, met last month and identified the establishment of an endowed chair as their top priority. David A. Rockstraw, academic department head and distinguished achievement professor, says this position creates opportunities for students to learn from additional first-rate educators and increases the department’s financial leverage in receiving federal funding for proposed research activities.

“Recruitment and retention of world-class educators is critical to student success, the development of new research programs and elevating recognition of NMSU CHME across the discipline,” Rockstraw said. “Thanks in large part to the generosity of Frank and Jennifer Seidel, the department has seen significant growth in the fundamentals of Brewing Engineering and undergraduate scholarships. Now, they've taken on the critical task of ensuring CHME has a competitive edge among peer institutions by establishing the department's first-ever endowed chair.”

CHME Academy members hope to reach a fundraising goal of $2 million to support the position. For more information about contributing to the CHME endowed chair, please contact Mark Gladden, NMSU director of development, at 575-373-5156.