Charles (BS ’63, MS ’65, PhD ’70) and Patricia (BA ’64, MS ’67) Krumm have established the George I. Haddad Graduate Fellowship Fund to support graduate students in Electrical and Computer Engineering.
The endowment fund honors Charles Krumm’s former doctoral advisor and mentor, Prof. George Haddad, and his contributions to the field of electrical and computer engineering.
George Haddad, Robert J. Hiller Professor Emeritus of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, came to Michigan from Lebanon as an undergraduate student. Returning for a master’s degree after a brief stint in industry, Haddad was encouraged to stay for a PhD by renowned professor and chair William Gould Dow. Haddad chaired the department for a total of 19 years, established highly successful research programs, grew the Solid State Electronics Laboratory and the Department, and graduated 57 doctoral students of his own. Among his numerous awards, he is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. Read more about George Haddad.
“I am truly touched and deeply appreciative of Pat and Chuck’s generosity,” said Haddad upon hearing about the Fund. “There is no doubt that their contribution will be a great source of help for many graduate students. Pat and Chuck could not have chosen a cause closer to my heart than financial assistance for outstanding students, as I spent my career championing, supporting, and securing funding for graduate students. My students have always been, and will continue to be, a great source of pride for me.”
As one of those students, Krumm has long wanted to give back to the department.
After retiring in 2008, Krumm concluded that his education at Michigan was the foundation of his career. That underpinning enabled him to confidently address new opportunities whether those fell within or outside the scope of his formal training.
On a larger scale, he also views education as playing a vital role in sustaining economic growth and societal progress.
“The problems electrical engineering graduate students address today require expensive equipment and facilities,” Krumm says. “You don’t do nanotechnology, computer networking, or robotics with just a benchtop full of electronic instruments,” said Krumm, referring to equipment he used as a student at Michigan in the 1960’s. Hence the cost of pursuing a graduate degree has become an insurmountable barrier for many students.
Considering how to address these problems and help provide access to education, Krumm reflected on his experiences at Michigan.
“Professor Haddad provided a stellar example,” Krumm says. “He spent his entire career educating students and building a world-class department of electrical engineering and computer science at Michigan.”
Haddad helped Michigan advance to the forefront in solid-state devices, computers, and computer applications. As Director of the Electron Physics Laboratory in the late 1960’s and 1970’s, Haddad worked tirelessly to secure significant funding to turn around a declining budget, and ultimately was able to provide whatever resources the growing staff demanded.
Based on Prof. Haddad’s example, the Krumms decided that a personal financial commitment was the most impactful way to assist students who seek an education in electrical engineering and computer science.
The Krumms hope that the establishment of the George I. Haddad Graduate Fellowship Fund will spur others to get involved.
“I want to encourage Prof. Haddad’s former students, colleagues and anyone else who has learned from or collaborated with Professor Haddad to contribute and be a part of the solution,” said Krumm.
“Those who have been successful have an obligation to give back and to help build on the progress we have achieved.”
Krumm said that studying at Michigan turned out to be a critical part of his success. He worked at Hughes, Raytheon, Conexant, and several small start-up companies, holds five patents, and was honored as an IEEE Fellow.
His education at Michigan enhanced many other aspects of Krumm’s life as well. He met his future wife, Pat, a graduate student in speech therapy, while he was writing his thesis. They both believe that the opportunity to attend concerts, plays and museums at Michigan greatly enriched their lifetime cultural experiences.
Interactions with students from around the world fostered Chuck’s interest in travel and led to many lifelong friendships. In fact, he and his former office mate, originally from Egypt, followed widely divergent career paths to the same location in southern California. They still meet for coffee every week.
“It has been a personally valuable educational experience to understand the world view of someone from another country and culture,” said Chuck. “Had I not attended a world-renown university, it is unlikely that I would have had this opportunity.”
Through improving access to a Michigan education with its enormous resources and benefits, Chuck and Pat Krumm look forward to the George I. Haddad Graduate Fellowship Fund enhancing the ability of future engineers to contribute positively to society.
Krumm encourages others to join in the simple and impactful action of contributing to the George I. Haddad Graduate Fellowship fund in order to benefit as many students as possible.
This endowment fund was established in honor of the outstanding teacher and scholar and in recognition of Prof. Haddad’s many contributions to the field of electrical and computer engineering (ECE). This fund supports graduate students in ECE.