Spring 2011

From the President

President Richmond

With start-up funding from Schatz, Professor Peter Lehman and his students began work on a solar hydrogen project at HSU’s marine lab in near-by Trinidad. Soon they were working to develop a better hydrogen fuel cell. Eventually, Schatz established a multi-million-dollar endowment at HSU which funds the Schatz Energy Research Center.

Today, the Schatz Lab has a new research building, 12 student researchers and 12 full-time staff members, and its successes include building the nation’s first street-legal hydrogen car. It also designed a portable fuel cell and a hydrogen energy education program, each of which is used at other universities, and it built a hydrogen fueling station on campus. Teams from the Lab have worked on energy projects in developing nations.

I enjoy telling people about the Schatz Lab (see cover story, page 24), and not just because of its scientific breakthroughs.

For me, it is a great example of how one person’s passion and desire to make a difference can impact so much and so many: scientific knowledge, how we live in the world, our students and our faculty who get to explore new ideas and apply them in meaningful ways. Schatz knew that his support of HSU would not only change HSU, it would change the world.

There are innumerable ways that you can make a difference at HSU, too. Gifts from individuals who are passionate about HSU provide the foundation which makes the difference between a good university and a great university. It is particularly gratifying to me that this is what happens, every day, through gifts we receive from our extremely generous alumni, parents and friends.

Each year, thousands of you respond to our letters and phone calls. These gifts—ranging from $20.11 to many thousands—support the student experience in vital ways. They fund equipment in our labs, special speakers, workshops and student research projects and presentations at conferences.

In addition, individuals create endowments to fund scholarships, often for students with interests or majors that they are particularly passionate about. Others, including many HSU faculty and staff, add to existing scholarship funds and to funds supporting specific academic programs. And last year, one parent, whose daughter has had a really good experience at HSU, handcrafted seven hardwood coffee tables for the student residence halls.

Your support is increasingly important as public universities, including HSU, transition to less reliance on public funding. Thank you to all of you who have made a gift to Humboldt, and please know that your donation is having a positive and lasting impact.

Rollin Richmond
Rollin C. Richmond