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Flagship Purdue Polytechnic High School center named to honor $4M gift from business leaders Ed and Beatriz Schweitzer

INDIANAPOLIS — Purdue University President Mitch Daniels announced on Friday (Oct. 2) that the university’s flagship Purdue Polytechnic High School will honor Purdue alumnus Edmund O. Schweitzer III and Beatriz Schweitzer for their $4 million commitment to programs and scholarships to support the educational and career success of underrepresented students.

The naming of the Schweitzer Center at Purdue Polytechnic High School Englewood was approved by Purdue’s Board of Trustees during its meeting in Indianapolis, where Purdue created its first of three alternative charter high schools in 2017. The high schools were launched to better prepare traditionally underserved students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. 

The naming honors the latest gift to Purdue from the couple, based in Pullman, Washington. Edmund Schweitzer earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Purdue’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 1968 and 1971. He is the founder, president and chief technology officer

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Anonymous $1M cash gift to establish scholarships for Black engineering students at Purdue

lewis-rLDavid Robert Lewis (Photo, courtesy of Purdue University Archives and Special Collections)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — An anonymous $1 million cash gift from a member of the Purdue University College of Engineering community will establish scholarships named in honor of the college’s first Black graduate as an impetus to energize and expand ongoing support to recruit and retain Black engineering students.

This gift extends a trend that has seen the total number of endowed scholarships for underrepresented minorities surge since 2013—from 43 to 140 as of Aug. 31 —with committed dollars quadrupling from $4.7 million to $17.2 million.

The new diversity in engineering scholarship endowment is named in memory of alumnus David Robert Lewis, who graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in 1894. A native of Greensburg, Indiana, Lewis was one of only nine Black students who graduated from Indiana colleges between the Civil War

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