PHOTO CAPTION: Representatives of both State Farm and Eastern Illinois University came together August 5 to celebrate a $100,000 investment State Farm made in the Charleston, Illinois-based university. State Farm’s investment will be used to upgrade computer labs and networking equipment at the state’s top-ranked regional public higher education institution. Pictured are a variety of State Farm’s regional associates, who are surrounding check holders (from left) Dr. David M. Glassman, EIU’s president, David Wasser, technical manager of Core Computing Operations at State Farm, and Tammy Wilson, State Farm agent.
(Charleston, IL) — A $100K gift from State Farm Companies Foundation to Eastern Illinois University will be used to upgrade computer labs and networking equipment at the state’s top-ranked regional public higher education institution.
Representing State Farm was a group of regional associates, who visited EIU’s campus August 5 to deliver a $100,000 check, and to celebrate their gift with a variety of EIU representatives, including EIU President Dr. David M. Glassman, EIU Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Jay Gatrell, and Dean of EIU’s Lumpkin College of Business and Technology Dr. Austin Cheney.
Jim Slaven, State Farm public affairs specialist, described the investment as a “win-win situation” for the students, the university and for State Farm.
“As a company that relies heavily on technology, State Farm is committed to giving students the tools and resources they need to thrive in a high-tech workforce here in Illinois and across the globe,” State Farm’s Slaven said. “State Farm is proud to partner with Eastern Illinois University to provide these upgrades, and to help Eastern reinforce its strong legacy of preparing students for lucrative and fulfilling careers.”
EIU President Dr. David Glassman agreed, and thanked State Farm Insurance Companies and the State Farm Foundation for its commitment to Eastern and its students.
“Eastern Illinois University is extremely grateful to State Farm and the State Farm Foundation for their investment,” Glassman said. “The students in our Lumpkin College of Business and Technology are given a world-class education by our highly qualified faculty. The technology upgrades this investment provides will further enrich the applied learning experiences EIU is known for providing.”
“State Farm’s investment in the technical infrastructure at EIU’s Lumpkin College is a testament to the critical programs and services we provide to our students,” Cheney added. “In turn, students bring the technical skills they learned at EIU into the regional workforce, helping businesses like State Farm by providing qualified and knowledgeable employees.”
Slaven agreed, and added that “today’s society requires solid basis and understanding of technology. Technology is adapting and evolving every day, which requires employees in every field to embrace changes and challenges with equal enthusiasm.”
Eastern Illinois University and State Farm, headquartered in Bloomington, Illinois, share a storied and prosperous relationship. State Farm regularly leverages external service providers like Eastern Illinois University to provide flexibility in meeting changing workforce and customer needs. According to State Farm, at least 500 EIU alumni are employed by the insurance and financial services company—and likely many more given that employees provide their alumni affiliations on a discretionary basis.
State Farm’s most recent commitment to EIU embodies a strong history of support for the Charleston, Illinois-based university. To recognize their previous contributions, Eastern Illinois University named State Farm and the State Farm Companies Foundation as recipients of the university’s prestigious Burnham and Nancy Neal Outstanding Philanthropist awards in 1998 and 2007, respectively.
Several of Eastern Illinois University’s advisory boards and committees also benefit from the contributions of current and former State Farm employees and EIU alumni. Most recently, State Farm’s Systems Department Director Krupal Swami (’95) serves as a member of EIU’s School of Business Advisory Board, while State Farm’s Administrative Services Manager Barbara Moore (’08) serves as a member of EIU’s Accountancy Program Advisory Board.
“We value the relationship we share with State Farm, and we look forward to the amazing things our ongoing partnership will continue to produce,” Cheney said.
For more information about EIU, or to learn more about its growing assortment of programs and services, visit the university’s website at www.eiu.edu, or call EIU’s public information office at (217) 581-7400.