Girls learn engineering basics at a 2019 Clark School summer camp. A $3 million gift from Lockheed Martin will in part support STEM education for women and underrepresented minorities. (Photo: Alison Harbaugh)
A three-year, $3 million gift to the A. James Clark School of Engineering from Lockheed Martin will fund aerospace research while increasing opportunities for women and underrepresented minorities in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields.
The gift deepens a strategic partnership established in 2010 and renewed last year between the University of Maryland and the Bethesda-based global security and aerospace firm. Lockheed Martin’s association with UMD dates back to 1944, when co-founder Glenn L. Martin funded four buildings, including the wind tunnel and classroom building that bear his name.
“Lockheed Martin has played a significant role in the storied history of the A. James Clark School of Engineering, and we are proud to continue our relationship as the recipient of Lockheed Martin’s largest gift of the year to any institution,” said Darryll J. Pines, Clark School dean and Farvardin Professor. “This generous gift will empower Clark School students and faculty to remain at the forefront of innovation in aerospace technology, and to advance our commitment to a diverse and inclusive engineering community.”
The new grant will fund vertical takeoff and landing research conducted at the university’s rotorcraft lab in the E.A. Fernandez IDEA Factory, scheduled to open in 2021, and high-speed flight experiments up to Mach 8, or 6,000 mph, at the school’s new hypersonic wind tunnel. It will also underwrite programs overseen by the Clark School’s Center for Minorities in Science and Engineering and Women in Engineering Program that aim to boost the enrollment of women and underrepresented minorities in STEM disciplines.
“Lockheed Martin has partnered with the University of Maryland for more than seven decades, and we are proud to continue that successful relationship with this grant supporting aerospace innovation,” said Keoki Jackson, chief technology officer at Lockheed Martin. “We expect to hire 50,000 STEM professionals over the next decade, and together we will inspire the next generation of engineers to join us in creating breathtaking generation-after-next technology.”
Earlier this year, Lockheed Martin also awarded scholarships to nine UMD students pursuing majors in engineering or computer science as part of its new STEM Scholarship Program. Each of the students will receive up to $40,000 in funding, or $10,000 per school year, from Lockheed Martin and are eligible for paid internships with the company.
Today, Lockheed Martin employs over 600 UMD graduates holding nearly 700 degrees, and it has a formal collaboration agreement in place with the school to research, develop and design advanced technology systems, products, and services.
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