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Gift supporting new master's degree
Funds will support building remodel
May 3, 2010--A seven-figure gift from Tri-State University alumnus and Trine University trustee James D. Bock and his wife, Joan, will fund the remodeling of a building to launch an intended new Trine master of biomedical engineering degree.
Bock earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at Tri-State, now Trine, in 1954. He retired as president of Bock Industries in Elkhart, Ind. in 1989, founding Bock Engineering in Elkhart the next year. In 2003, he joined the university’s board of trustees. His gift will lead to the remodeling of the university’s aeronautical engineering building as the Bock Center for Biomedical Engineering.
The remodeling sets the stage for the addition of a master’s degree in biomedical engineering, for which the university anticipates approval from the Higher Learning Commission this spring. The degree could be offered as early as fall semester this year, and was developed as a response to expressed student educational needs. Expert faculty members would be added to support the engineering graduate degree program.
Capital and equipment needs for the new biomedical engineering degree are supported in part by a Congressionally-directed grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) Office of Science. Trine will also offer graduate engineering distance learning opportunities as a curriculum development project funded in part by a Congressionally-directed grant from the USDOE Office of Postsecondary Education. Both grants were made possible through the support of Rep. Mark Souder, R-Fort Wayne. The biomedical engineering program has also received private funding.
The renovation will include new windows, new roof, new entrances and demolition of all interior spaces. A new lab will be barrier-free and without walls to allow for greater collaboration and class movement in and about the research area. New laboratory equipment will be installed specific to the biomedical engineering field.
The program’s laboratory and curriculum design support the needs of the orthopedic businesses in Warsaw, Ind., the orthopedic capital of the world. The project also supports Orthoworx, a Warsaw-based industry, community and education initiative to advance and support growth and innovation within the region’s uniquely concentrated, globally significant orthopedics device sector.
Phase II of the university’s Vision for the Future capital campaign, still in the silent phase, will raise $75 million for endowment, capital projects and the Annual Fund for student scholarships and university operations. Nearly $26 million of total funds are designated for capital projects such as the remodeling of Ford Hall to house the Ketner School of Business, the renovation of the T. Furth Center for Performing Arts and the renovation of Hershey Hall athletic complex.
“As a private engineering school with a 125-year history of providing the finest in engineering education, we are taking the lead in northern Indiana and across the state to support the biomedical and orthopedic industry,” said Trine University President Earl D. Brooks II. “As we move ahead with a biomedical engineering graduate program, we create opportunities for our students to move into careers in a vital and growing business. We appreciate the generous support of people like the Bocks, which enables us to fulfill our mission of equipping students to succeed, lead and serve.”