College of Optical Sciences raises $12.5 million for scholarships



TO: UA Campus Community
FROM: President Ann Weaver Hart
DATE: February 11, 2015
SUBJECT: College of Optical Sciences raises $12.5 million for scholarships


I am very happy to share news that the UA College of Optical Sciences has successfully completed a groundbreaking campaign to raise $12.5 million for scholarships. In response to an incredibly generous challenge from the College’s founding dean and professor emeritus, Dr. James C. Wyant, over 270 donors raised $2.5 million, which Dr. Wyant matched at a 4 to 1 rate.

Dr. Wyant’s challenge was announced just over a year ago at an annual optics convention in San Francisco and was expected to take several years to complete. Along with the diversity within the donor group, which includes UA alumni and faculty, business and industry leaders, an optics association, and faculty from other universities, the speed with which this support was generated speaks to the prominence of the College and Dr. Wyant’s leadership here at the UA and throughout the field. The funds raised will support 27 new Friends of Tucson Optics (or FoTO) scholarships for graduate students, complementing 3 that were already in existence. Each will award a stipend of $20,000 to first-year graduate students, enabling student success and engagement during what is often the most challenging year of graduate study.

Dr. Wyant’s leadership and the generosity of the many builders and supporters of the College in completing this scholarship challenge are reminders of how much is possible here at the UA. As we move forward with the Arizona NOW campaign, I am grateful to have this unique example of robust partnership and look forward to the continued excellence it will enable in the College of Optical Sciences. Please join me in thanking Dr. Wyant and the rest of the generous supporters who have made this program such a success.