A gift from Airbus

Airbus Americas officials present the College of Engineering with a flap from an A300 wide-body aircraft. (Photo credit: Curtis Chan)

Airbus Americas officials present the College of Engineering with a flap from an A300 wide-body aircraft. (Photo credit: Curtis Chan)

Corporate donations are not unusual at Penn State. Companies will often send the University money, software or equipment. But a newly-arrived gift inside a very large orange crate is one of the more unusual donations Penn State has received in recent memory.

Delivered on Sept. 30, the crate contains a flap for an Airbus A300 wide-body airplane for the Department of Aerospace Engineering.

Richard Auhl, a research associate in aerospace engineering, said the flap would be used for teaching, providing students with hands-on structures and dynamics laboratory measurements.

The gift was the brainchild of Jason Reed, vice president of material, logistics and suppliers for Airbus Americas and a 2001 aerospace engineering graduate.

Reed said a left-hand side inboard flap like the one delivered to Penn State is valued at more than $926,000 new. But because the part was rendered unserviceable to prevent the flap from accidentally entering the spare parts market and used on an operating aircraft, the part’s value is essential for scrap.

An Airbus delegation including Mary Anne Greczyn, Airbus Americas manager of communication, and Reed, formally handed the flap over to the aerospace engineering department today (Oct. 4).

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100 Days till THON

Today marks 100 days until THON — the annual IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon that supports children and their families in their fight against pediatric cancer. In 100 days, students will stand on their feet for 46 hours without sleeping in remembrance and support of all those who have been affected by pediatric cancer.

More than 15,000 student volunteers engage in a year-long fundraising effort — the largest student-run philanthropy in the world — for the Four Diamonds Fund at the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. To date, the organization has raised $89 million for the fund, including last year’s record of $10.56 million.

Among the volunteers are several engineering students and organizations. They dedicate their free time helping to combat a disease that’s the number-one killer of children in the U.S. – more than asthma, cystic fibrosis, diabetes and pediatric AIDS combined.

As the clock ticks toward THON weekend — Feb. 15-17, 2013 at the Bryce Jordan Center — the College of Engineering will host its own countdown by featuring some of the students and organizations who are helping to make a difference.

Over the next 100 days in this blog, we’ll be featuring three engineers who are also THON overall chairs, sharing updates from various organizations and posting news about THON-related events.

For the Kids!

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