It is with great excitement that the Odegard School marks its 50th anniversary in 2018. The school has grown from a humble beginning to the outstanding operation it is today. Before we celebrate our anniversary year, let's look back at the second half of 2017.
In early October, the UND Aerospace Foundation, the UND Alumni Foundation, and the Center for Innovation Foundation teamed up to host a memorial for our friend and benefactor James C. Ray, who passed away earlier in the year. We are very grateful for the $25 million in gifts that James bestowed upon the Odegard School and UND.
The James C. Ray Foundation is contributing $500,000 to establish the James C. Ray Memorial Freshman Scholarship Endowment. This contribution was matched with $500,000 each from the UND Aerospace Foundation and the UND Alumni Foundation, for a combined endowment of $1.5 million. Si and Betty Robin have contributed to this endowment as well. What a great tribute to James Ray's legacy.
Please congratulate Professors Gary Ullrich and Paul Snyder for receiving the John K. Lauber Safety Award at the University Aviation Association annual meeting in September. Gary and Paul were instrumental in implementing the first FAA-approved safety management system program for a university aviation school.
Congratulations also to Dr. Xiaodong Zhang, professor of Earth Systems Science and Policy, who presented the University's November Faculty Lecture. Dr. Zhang is a well-funded researcher and recognized expert for his oceanography research.
On a sad note, we lost Chester Fritz Distinguished Professor Leon Osborne to cancer in October. Leon was the consummate professor, and very instrumental in helping Deans John Odegard and Bruce Smith develop the Odegard School. We miss him immensely.
Finally, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency (CBP) announced a new test program exclusively for UND, hiring 15 sophomore and junior Commercial Aviation and UAS majors while they finish their degree. The students will gain experience working for CBP in Grand Forks and upon graduation will be assigned to flight officer or unmanned aviation positions. Thank you to Senator Hoeven and his staff for helping to facilitate this new program.
Please join us as we celebrate 50 years of success and excellence at the Odegard School. More information on these events is available at aero.und.edu/50th.
Thank you for your support of UND Aerospace!
Paul Lindseth, Dean
John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences