Tarboro firm supports students and facilities at East Carolina University

ECU Technology Systems professor Jim Linn, center, assists students Matthew Johnson, left, and Grover Black, standing, with learning about basic electricity. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

Funding from Keihin Carolina Systems Technology will support both students and facilities at East Carolina University’s College of Technology and Computer Science.

A new $20,000 scholarship fund from K-CST will benefit students transferring into ECU’s technology and computer science programs from Edgecombe Community College.

Chris Eckhardt, vice president and chief operating officer of Keihin’s Tarboro manufacturing plant, established the fund to facilitate regional growth by helping students continue their education and remain employed locally.

“We intend to partner with both ECU and ECC to provide an educational pathway for students to pursue a technology-based education,” Eckhardt said.

The fund is intended for Edgecome County students who show interest and promise in engineering and technology. Recipients would first complete their associate’s degree from ECC, then transfer to complete a bachelor’s in either engineering, technology systems or computer science at ECU. The scholarship will support two students per semester and the first awards will be made in spring 2012 for the fall 2012 semester.

Keihin also funded a $100,000 endowment supporting an instructional and research laboratory that will provide cutting-edge technology and tools for the college’s faculty and students.

Technology and Computer Science Dean David White said, “It’s important to develop local resources for local companies.

“The college is committed to supporting economic development in eastern North Carolina and this generous gift will help develop existing regional talent, which may stay in the area to develop and grow new industries,” he said.



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