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Electrical engineering alumnus establishes scholarship

Bennett Leckrone | Apr 22, 2019
James Knight

Electrical engineering alumnus establishes scholarship

Bennett Leckrone | Apr 22, 2019

Ohio University electrical engineering alumnus James W. Knight, BSEE ’69, has committed $90,000 to establish the James W. Knight Engineering Scholarship through The Ohio University Foundation to benefit Russ College of Engineering and Technology students with financial need.

“We appreciate this generous gift from Dr. Knight, which reflects his commitment to creating future engineers,” said Russ College Dean Dennis Irwin. “His commitment will help students receive the same high-quality education he did while at Ohio University.”

Knight, an emeritus associate professor of industrial and systems engineering at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, said he hopes the scholarship will help deserving students complete their undergraduate education with less financial stress.

“I wanted to give back in a small way for the educational opportunity afforded me by Ohio University,” Knight said.

Knight has vivid memories of his time on Ohio University’s campus during a turbulent time in the nation’s history that included protests against the Vietnam War and President Dwight D. Eisenhower visiting campus in October 1965. Knight was also a member of a student group that helped with the dedication of the then-new Clippinger Hall, which housed the Department of Electrical Engineering and other academic units at the time.

“As an electrical engineering student, I enjoyed being in the new building,” Knight recalled. “Most of the faculty were very dedicated to the students.”

Knight said that the expansion of Ohio University’s engineering program since his undergraduate years, in addition to the program’s achievements and recognition, have been gratifying. For him, “create for good” encapsulates everything engineering is about.

“Engineers are crucial to society. I strongly believe in the college’s motto of ‘create for good,’” Knight said. “Ohio University offers an engineering education in a broader environment of liberal arts and sciences, which is important to developing the whole person.”

The Ohio University Foundation is the repository for all private gifts through annual giving programs, capital, and special campaigns and planned or deferred gifts. The Foundation is an institutionally related, non-profit, tax-exempt, 501c(3) organization. Each year, more than 20,000 alumni and friends make gifts to the Foundation to support students, faculty research and creative activity, innovative programs, select capital projects, and community partnerships.

Colleen Carow contributed to this story.