FSU Panama City announces endowment for mechanical engineering

Becky Kelly

FSU Panama City will host a press conference at 9 a.m. Tuesday, May 1, in the Dean’s Conference Room, Holley A301, to announce the Engineering the Future endowment for the new mechanical engineering program. The fund, initiated by commitments from the Gulf Power Foundation and St. Joe Community Foundation, has a goal of $1 million.

“We are so proud to offer this much-needed program, but we recognize that we need scholarships to recruit and retain students and funding for updated labs and professional development opportunities for both students and faculty,” said Randy Hanna, dean of FSU Panama City. “This endowment will provide annual funding for these needs and will continue to support the program for years to come.”

A $1 million endowment will yield annual spendable earnings of $40,000 with additional earnings allowing the fund to grow in perpetuity.

With their commitments to the Engineering the Future Endowed Fund, the Gulf Power Company and the St. Joe Company foundations will have provided nearly $2 million in combined cumulative giving to FSU Panama City. Both companies have sponsored the campus’s golf tournament and annual dinner, established endowed scholarships for students in STEM degree programs and served as the lead donors at the beginning of FSU Panama City’s current $10 million campaign. 

“These local companies have been champions of higher education,” Hanna said.

The FAMU-FSU mechanical engineering program, which is expanding from the Tallahassee campus in fall 2018, teaches contemporary engineering practices for developing products from concept to the marketplace. Courses focus on thermal and fluid systems, mechanical systems, mechanics and materials, dynamic systems, and engineering design.

Dean Randy Hanna, FSU Panama City; Dean Murray Gibson, FSU-FAMU College of Engineering; CEO/President Jorge Gonzalez, St. Joe Company; and CEO/President Stan Connally, Gulf Power Company will be available for interview after the press conference.