UTA Magazine
Historic Gift
Record contribution boosts K-16 efforts, helps create endowed chair

The College of Education has received $766,800 from Steffen E. Palko, the largest cash gift from an individual in the college’s history.

The gift is part of a $2 million project that will create an endowment to establish a Distinguished University Chair in Education, the first of its kind in the Southwest, and a research and scholarly community of partners in biology, education and the cognitive and developmental sciences. The collaboration is called K-16 Mind, Brain Education.

Palko, a founder and former president of Fort Worth-based XTO Energy, sees UT Arlington’s K-16 Mind, Brain Education efforts as a way to significantly impact the future.

"People ask me why UTA," he said. "Because I think the faculty and staff here, with the College of Education capably led by Dean Jeanne Gerlach, have the vision, the background and the enthusiasm."

President James D. Spaniolo says the gift will produce important results.

"Steffen Palko’s generosity and commitment will make a difference not only for our College of Education but for K-16 students far beyond our campus," he said.

As a member of the International Mind, Brain and Education Society, the college will host a symposium on the subject in conjunction with Harvard University in 2007.

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