Mechanical engineering alumnus and spouse pledge $250,000 to support scholarship


By Erin Cassidy Hendrick

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State mechanical engineering alumnus Clyde Shuman and his wife, Nancy, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, have committed an additional $250,000 to the University’s Department of Mechanical Engineering to support the existing Clyde W. Shuman Jr. Family Trustee Scholarship in Engineering.

Since its inception in 2004, the scholarship has assisted more than 50 engineering students who have significant financial need to help them continue their education at Penn State.

“Scholarships like these are critical to keeping the doorway to engineering open for more students,” said Karen Thole, distinguished professor and department head. "Clyde’s funding has been invaluable in that goal!”

The Shumans have been staunch supporters of the mechanical engineering department. The couple’s previous gifts include the creation of the Clyde W. Shuman Family Program Support Endowment, which helps to support academic excellence in engineering education, and the Shuman Family Early Career Professorship.

The family is also responsible for the creation of the Shuman Scholars program in the mechanical engineering department. An initiative that gives students an opportunity to conduct a long-term research project during their undergraduate careers, the program’s goal is to facilitate a growing interest in research and a passion to pursue a graduate degree in mechanical engineering.

Through the Shuman scholarship, Audrey Blizard, a senior studying mechanical engineering, said the program has helped set her on the path for graduate school.

“It gave me the research experience I needed to make a confident and informed decision that getting my doctorate is right for me,” she said. “The Shuman program provided me with so many resources, I was able to hit the ground running in a lab!”

The additional funding will allow even more students the opportunities to discover new possibilities through undergraduate research, just as Blizard has.

This gift will advance “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” a focused campaign that seeks to elevate Penn State’s position as a leading public university in a world defined by rapid change and global connections. With the support of alumni and friends, “A Greater Penn State” seeks to fulfill the three key imperatives of a 21st-century public university: keeping the doors to higher education open to hardworking students regardless of financial well-being; creating transformative experiences that go beyond the classroom; and impacting the world by fueling discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship. To learn more about “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” visit


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Megan Lakatos



With more than 60 faculty members, 330 graduate students, and 1,000 undergraduate students, the Penn State Department of Mechanical Engineering embraces a culture that welcomes individuals with a diversity of backgrounds and expertise. Our faculty and students are innovating today what will impact tomorrow’s solutions to meeting our energy needs, homeland security, biomedical devices, and transportation systems. We offer B.S. degrees in mechanical engineering as well as resident (M.S., Ph.D.) and online (M.S.) graduate degrees in mechanical engineering. See how we’re inspiring change and impacting tomorrow at

Department of Mechanical Engineering

137 Reber Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-4400

Phone: 814-865-2519