Hartford, Conn., Feb. 24, 2011 - Trinity has received a $1.2 million bequest from the estate of Thomas McKenna Meredith, a 1948 Trinity alumnus, who died in 2007. The gift will establish a permanent endowment at the College to support the appointment of a faculty member in the Environmental Science Program.
The gift is designed to be invested and grow, eventually establishing the Thomas McKenna Meredith ’48 Professorship of Environmental Science. Initially, for several years the endowed fund will support a post-doctoral fellow who will both teach and conduct research in the Environmental Science Program.
A longtime resident of Hartford and also Green Hill, Rhode Island, Meredith was the retired chairman of investment firm Coburn & Meredith. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II and completed 30 years of service in the U.S. Naval Reserve, from which he retired as a commander. Meredith traveled extensively, most notably in the Arctic and Antarctica.
“It was a pleasure to contact Trinity to let them know about our dad’s gift,” said Melissa Meredith. “My brother Bill and I are delighted to see this endowed fund established in his honor. Our father had two passions in life—small growth stocks and Arctic travel. His smart investments over the years will now benefit his alma mater; perhaps Trinity students will even learn about the Arctic in an environmental science course. He would be pleased.”
Trinity College Dean of Faculty Rena Fraden said, “We are grateful for Mr. Meredith’s generous gift and what it will make possible for a vibrant, yet relatively young, academic program. Environmental science draws together diverse branches of learning, from geophysics and engineering to biology and chemistry, with an interdisciplinary approach that transcends departmental boundaries. This gift will enable us to strengthen an important academic program at Trinity.”
In 2000, Trinity established its Environmental Science Program in response to dramatic growth in the field and a surge in student interest. An overwhelming response from students led to the establishment of the environmental science major in 2002; and in 2008, to meet growing interest, program faculty established a minor. Currently, 30 Trinity students are majoring in environmental science.