UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Terrence M. and Kim Pegula, who committed $88 million in 2010 to launch Penn State’s entry into NCAA Division I hockey and construction on a state-of-the-art arena, have raised their total support for the initiative to $102 million. The additional $14 million gift was announced by Terry Pegula at the April 20 groundbreaking for the Pegula Ice Arena. The Pegulas’ total commitment includes $13 million for endowed scholarships supporting Penn State men’s hockey players in addition to $89 million for the facility.
"A program is only as strong as the student athletes who chose to dedicate their time and talent to making it great," said Pegula. "We hope that through these scholarships, Penn State will be able to build a team of rising hockey stars who will succeed athletically and academically at the University. We also want to make sure that these young people have a facility which will allow them to fulfill their potential and be the best possible representatives of the University and Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics."
Penn State’s first NCAA Division I hockey games will take place in the Pegula Ice Arena in 2013. While the Pegulas’ support has covered the $89 million construction cost of the facility, Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics is engaged in a campaign to secure an additional $10 million to maintain the arena and to create endowments for the new men’s and women’s varsity hockey programs. To date, a total of $3.7 million has been raised from other donors.
"The Pegulas have set an extraordinary example for Penn State alumni and friends who share their love of hockey and other ice sports," said David Joyner, acting director of intercollegiate athletics. "Thanks to their generosity, and the gifts they’ve inspired, Penn State will be able to enter NCAA hockey at the very highest level, with a facility unsurpassed anywhere in the nation and with vital support for the student athletes who chose to pursue their degrees and their hockey careers at the University."
The Pegulas have been leaders in the oil and natural gas industry, primarily in the Appalachian Basin. Terry Pegula is the founder and former president, CEO and principal shareholder of East Resources Inc., a privately-held independent exploration and development company based in Warrendale, Pa., and acquired in July 2010 by Royal Dutch Shell. Pegula, born and raised in Carbondale, Pa., earned a bachelor of science degree in petroleum and natural gas engineering from Penn State in 1973, started East Resources Inc. in 1983 and built it into one of the largest privately held companies in the United States. Kim Pegula, a graduate of Houghton College, also has been involved with East Resources since 1991. With their five children, the Pegulas are longtime fans of hockey, and Terry Pegula became the owner of the Buffalo Sabres in February 2011.
"Philanthropy has its greatest impact when it grows out of a true passion, and the Pegulas’ passion for hockey and Penn State is unparalleled," said Rodney P. Kirsch, senior vice president for development and alumni relations. "Terry and Kim’s generosity sets a new standard for private giving at Penn State."