Scholar, funding support ECU chemistry department

Pictured from left to right are Wanda Williams, human resources manager, Fuji Silysia Chemical Ltd.; David Steffensen, controller, Fuji Silysia Chemical Ltd.; Takafumi Urushibara, technical center, Fuji Silysia Chemical Ltd.; Dr. Michael B. Brown, associate dean, Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences; Jennifer Tripp, major gifts officer, Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences; and Dr. Rickey Hicks, chairman, Department of Chemistry.


Fuji Silysia Chemical of Greenville donated $10,000 to the East Carolina University Department of Chemistry Thursday to support special projects in the department. The company is also supporting a master’s level chemical scientist, Takafumi Urushibara, as visiting scholar for two years.

“This is our way of building our relationship with East Carolina University, and a way that we give back to the community,” said Wanda S. Williams, human resources manager for Fuji Silysia Chemical.

“Fuji Silysia Chemical supports the advancement of technology of our local chemistry department. We are hoping, in our own small way, that this will help give back to our community as our community has helped us,” Williams said.

ECU chemistry department chair Dr. Rickey Hicks said, “These projects support our mission of providing the highest quality educational and research experiences to our undergraduate and graduate students.”

Fuji Silysia Chemical Ltd. is an international company established in 1965, which produces synthetic silica products used in various industries ranging from plastics and coatings to cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. The corporate headquarters are located in Japan, with additional offices in Italy, Switzerland and North Carolina.

At the Greenville location, the company makes silica gel, which is often used as a desiccant in food packaging. Silica gel keeps materials dry, preventing damage to food, artwork and other packaged products.

Additional information about Fuji Silysia Chemical Ltd. may be found online at For more information about the ECU Department of Chemistry, contact Hicks at 252-328-9700 or


61 thoughts on “Scholar, funding support ECU chemistry department

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