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Millennium Society members making a difference

Impacting science, education, and the world
7 November 2019
Millennium Society chairpersons Karen and Matt Keller.

Twenty years ago, the Eberly College of Science ushered in a new era with the establishment of the Millennium Society, a distinguished group of Penn State alumni and friends of the Eberly College of Science who generously fund academic excellence. The college developed a plan to build upon its previous success and strengthen its role as a leader in the basic biological, physical, and mathematical sciences, underpinned by a recognition of the crucial importance of private support to achieve these goals. The Millennium Society thanks and recognizes individuals for their philanthropic support of the sciences at Penn State, which helps to ensure an excellent experience for our students, advance our scientific research, and leverage our global connectivity for worldwide impact.

The original objectives of the Millennium Society to support scientific excellence still hold true today, thanks to the many individuals who support the college with their financial resources. Throughout these past 20 years, several alumni have served as volunteer chairs to support and champion these efforts. Our current chairpersons are Matt and Karen Keller, who have served in this role since 2015. As with their predecessors, their commitment to the college and philanthropy is contagious.

“It is more important now than ever to have private support for the unfettered study of science,” said Karen Keller. “We support Penn State because we believe in its mission and the amazing contributions the University community makes to improve our knowledge and society.”

“The generosity of Eberly Science alumni and friends has a great impact on the future,” added Matt Keller. “This support provides more student opportunities for learning, provides scholarships, and advances our research.”

Gifts from Millennium Society members can support a wide range of efforts and activities, including undergraduate scholarships, graduate teaching and research assistants, and enrichment of the Eberly student experience. Faculty can also provide seed funding to begin innovative research projects, and other gifts can help to equip labs and classrooms with the latest technologies or assist in the construction of the college’s world-class educational and research facilities. These contributions can have a profound impact.

Liz Rosa De Aza ’21, a rising junior in the college’s Science program, has benefitted greatly from gifts to the Millennium Society. “Growing up less privileged has not only offered academic and financial challenges but has also helped me realize the true value of a college education and the good that can come from it,” she said. “Thank you so much for your kind generosity. My educational pursuits would not be possible if not for your support.”