Smeal College celebrates philanthropy

Smeal For the Future Campaign Committee member and former committee chair, and member of the college’s Board of Visitors Bryon Deysher, Class of 1977, addressed guests at the April 11 Leaders Celebration, an annual event acknowledging the outstanding generosity of donors. Credit: Steve Tressler / Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Alumni and friends of the Penn State Smeal College of Business gathered at the Business Building on April 11 to celebrate the impact of philanthropy on students and faculty. The college’s annual Leaders Celebration acknowledges the outstanding generosity of donors who provide student scholarships, enhance physical resources and technology, support faculty research and more.

Charles Whiteman, John and Becky Surma Dean of Smeal, was among the evening’s speakers. He thanked donors and the volunteer chair of Smeal’s campaign committee, Mitch Cohen, as well as Cohen’s predecessor, Bryon Deysher, for their leadership and generosity. Steve Huddart, chair of the Department of Accounting, commented on the role private support plays in strengthening his department.

In addition, junior finance major Emily Zheng spoke about her experience with the Rogers Family Trading Room and her gratitude to those donors who participated in the Rogers Trading Room Challenge, which raised $2 million to support this unique lab and classroom.

“What I’ve come to realize is Penn State’s comparative advantage does not lie within the sheer size of its alumni base, but rather in the obligation our alumni feel to pay forward what was given to them,” Zheng said. “As a student, I grow constantly more aware of the community that I aspire to be a part of. While I seek to build my legacy upon those past, I can only hope to have the capacity to give such a chance to a future Penn Stater.”

This year’s event coincided with the successful conclusion of the largest fundraising campaign in Penn State history. For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students surpassed its goal, raising $2.158 billion. See for more information about the For the Future Campaign, stories of how philanthropy is advancing the University and more photos from the weekend’s events.

Last Updated April 16, 2014