A new STEM-focused position at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology will be funded in an unusual way. An anonymous donor who graduated from the school plans to donate auction proceeds from a rare hybrid sports car to establish a chair in the name of a longtime faculty member. The 2015 McLaren P1, which is expected to fetch up to $2.3 million, is considered a pioneering high-performance vehicle.
In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Rose-Hulman President Jim Conwell says the auction could generate more than money. Though Conwell says people throughout Indiana and in education engineering circles know Rose-Hulman, "the average person that says ‘I’m interested in college’ — we kind of struggle in that way and we struggle in just a person off-the-street knowing Rose-Hulman."
The sale proceeds will endow the planned Alfred R. Schmidt Chair for Excellence in Teaching, which will be named for a math professor who worked at the Terre Haute campus for 46 years before retiring in 1995. Vice President of Academic Affairs Anne Houtman says "at Rose-Hulman, we are laser focused on educating the next generation of STEM professionals. We have always invested in teaching, and this generous gift reinforces that commitment while enabling us to continue attracting and retaining world-class faculty. I can’t think of a better way to honor Professor Schmidt’s legacy."
The Gooding & Co. auction is set for March 10. You can connect to more about the sale from Rose-Hulman by clicking here.