YPSILANTI – In recognition of a new $5 million gift in addition to $15 million contributed over the past 15 months by GameAbove, an Eastern Michigan University alumni group, the University is renaming its engineering and technology college to the GameAbove College of Engineering and Technology.
The EMU Board of Regents approved the renaming at its regular meeting on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. The new name will become effective March 1, 2021.
GameAbove is a team of passionate Eastern Michigan University alumni who desire to make a difference for all of EMU and the Ypsilanti community, and has made unprecedented contributions to support Eastern students and faculty.
The team includes a diverse group of individuals of various ages and backgrounds, including accomplished entrepreneurs, business people, Hall of Famers and select EMU coaches, all of whom are EMU graduates. The group has been laser-focused on supporting the University and its students and faculty.
The group’s partnership with the University and its philanthropy are far-reaching, including gifts for faculty support, broad student support and athletics. GameAbove members view themselves as highly committed partners in the success of the University and, through their philanthropy, they seek to powerfully inspire other friends and alumni to give.
“The College of Engineering and Technology has a strong reputation. It will soon be making waves at a national level with the addition of several new engineering programs and a particular focus on emerging technologies such as cybersecurity for connected and autonomous vehicles and select aviation specialties,” said Keith J. Stone, member of the GameAbove Advisory Board. “We strive to have these selected programs recognized nationally as the absolute best in the country, making Eastern Michigan incredibly attractive to students for decades to come.”
Eastern Michigan University President James Smith said, “We are extremely proud and gratified to honor the singular contributions of GameAbove with the renaming of our outstanding College of Engineering and Technology. GameAbove’s extraordinary $20 million in support to the University, over a 15-month period of time, represents the largest gift portfolio received in Eastern Michigan University’s 171-year history.
“GameAbove’s partnership with the University signifies a truly historic commitment that will be transformative in our efforts to provide world-class experiences in engineering, technology, cybersecurity, autonomous vehicles, drone technology, gaming, aviation, and many other related careers. We greatly value GameAbove’s exceptional support of Eastern Michigan University students and faculty.”
Mohamad Qatu, dean of the College of Engineering and Technology (CET), expressed his appreciation for GameAbove’s partnership while noting the recent evolution of the college.
“These are important and exciting times for the college and GameAbove is helping to dramatically accelerate our ability to serve our students,” Qatu said. “We have recently added new programs in mechanical and electrical and computer engineering, and offer many other programs, such as Cyber Security and Aviation, that develop the skills needed in today’s career marketplace. In addition, we are near completion of a $40 million renovation of Sill Hall, home of the college. GameAbove’s support of the University, and specifically of our college, makes this naming both logical and emblematic of this group’s deep commitment to our faculty and students.”
GameAbove’s latest commitment of more than $5 million in support of the College of Engineering and Technology includes funding state-of the-art supplies, equipment and program upgrades for the newly renovated building, covering operating expenditures, supporting student recruitment and enrollment efforts and more.
GameAbove’s overall support of Eastern includes the following major efforts over the past 15 months:
- Committed $2 million to faculty-led research and special projects.
- Established a Students Matter Most initiative to provide financial resources for students, including learning clubs, intramural sports, student government and student organization priorities, solutions for student homelessness and housing insecurity, among other near-term needs. The group also partnered with the EMU Foundation at the start of the pandemic shutdown on a matching campaign, together raising more than $100,000 for the Student Emergency Fund that was able to immediately assist and support students in need.
- Gifted $2 million for EMU April 2020 graduates and incoming 2020 fall semester first-year students, providing $600 per graduate and $400 to each incoming first-year student without obligations or restrictions regarding eligibility or use.
- Funded efforts to help EMU students, faculty, and staff purchase tools and supplies to make masks, gowns and other PPE for nurses, doctors and staff at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital and Henry Ford Hospital.
For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University’s website.