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Air Products Foundation and Seifi Ghasemi Endow Lafayette Faculty Chair in Engineering for Interdisciplinary Teaching

Seifi GhasemiThe long-standing relationship* between Easton, Pennsylvania-based Lafayette College and Air Products was further reinforced by two special events the evening of 12 February 2018.

Lafayette College President Alison Byerly announced multiple gifts from the Air Products Foundation ($1.5 million), Air Products’ Chairman, President and CEO, Seifi Ghasemi ($500,000), as well as an anonymous donor matching gift ($1 million) in support of an endowed faculty chair in engineering and related facilities. The faculty position will be dedicated to interdisciplinary teaching. 

Byerly made the announcement just before Ghasemi delivered the President’s Entrepreneurship Lecture to a capacity audience of faculty, students and staff at Lafayette’s Colton Chapel. 

In his remarks, Ghasemi stressed the importance of humanities to every curriculum—including engineering, which he learned as a student at Iran’s Abadan Institute of Technology, established in partnership with Lafayette College (1956-67) to help the country train leaders for its oil industry. 
Ghasemi, who received an honorary degree from Lafayette in 2017, credits the College education he received at Abadan, which he said provided a rich liberal arts foundation that taught him how to think creatively to solve real-world problems. 
“Ghasemi embodies the Lafayette ideal of an interdisciplinary engineer with the ability to think broadly and see opportunity where others do not,” said Scott Hummel, the William Jeffers Director of the Engineering Division. “And it all started with the deep connections he made with Lafayette faculty when he was a student at Abadan,” he adds.
      Read more on the Lafayette Web site 

*Air Products has been a committed supporter of Lafayette College’s engineering programs and has funded the Minority Scientist & Engineers, Society of Women Engineers, Lafayette’s chapters of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, as well as equipment purchases for the College’s engineering programs. Air Products was a principal sponsor of the gala commemorating 150 years of engineering at Lafayette in October 2016. 

Air Products employs dozens of Lafayette alumni who remain actively engaged with the College through its Leadership Council, Chemical Engineering Symposium, Employer Advisor Board, and other activities. Air Products also continues to recruit talent from Lafayette and has active CDP and internship programs.

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