Although Edwin Kaiser and John McCormick have retired from teaching chemistry, they will still impact the education of future graduate students thanks to an endowed fellowship established in both of their names. Tarek Mansour and his wife, Colleen Evans, MS ’85 chemistry, set up the Edwin M. Kaiser/John P. McCormick Endowed Chemistry Fellowship to honor the two professors who have done so much to enhance their professional lives.
“Both of these men have inspired many generations of science and chemistry majors,” says Mansour. “Under their guidance and mentorship, Colleen and I developed both our technical and strategic perspectives.”
Teaching at MU since 1966, Kaiser’s area of focus was organometallics—how the interaction between organic chemicals with lithium and sodium reagents could lead to new medicinals.
“My reaction when learning of the fellowship was one of pleasant surprise, astonishment, and honor,” says Kaiser.
McCormick came to MU in 1972. His research focused on understanding the chemical basis for biological processes, and in the classroom, he created interactive software for development of analytical reasoning and problem-solving skills—programs that are now available for purchase.
“I was truly blown away by the news that Tarek and Colleen were so generously endowing support for graduate education at MU, and it is incredibly humbling that the scholarship support would bear my name,” says McCormick. “All the more so, because of the association with Professor Kaiser, whose teaching reputation is highly-regarded.”
The fellowship is intended to make the chemistry department more competitive in attracting and recruiting strong talent so that, upon graduating, the students will be the future ambassadors of the department and the university.
Mansour, executive vice-president for research and development at Xenon Pharmaceuticals, and Colleen, instructor of chemistry at Dominican College, say that their friendship with both of the professors continues to be a source of guidance and inspiration.
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