On Centre: Around Philipsburg | Endowment named after deceased architectural engineering staffer

October 17, 2013 

The saying goes that there are no small parts, only small actors. The idea is that everyone has a job, and doing that job well is what makes it important.

A Philipsburg woman is being honored for showing this truth.

Sharron Williams worked in the architectural engineering department at Penn State for 34 years. Her dedication to the students and contribution to the work done by the staff is remembered now, even six years after cancer claimed her life in 2007.

Even before then, the class of 1999 established an informal award in her honor in 2004.

“Sharron had a tremendous impact on the students in architectural engineering. ... If your academic adviser didn’t have the answer, they’d send you to Sharron,” said alumnus Jonathan Dougherty, director of James G. Davis Construction’s Corporate Knowledge Center.

That drove the desire to put something more meaningful in place, leading to a new endowment, the Sharron E. Williams Memorial Award in Architectural Engineering.

“Having a formal award for Sharron is something we all felt very strongly about,” said department head Chimay Anumba.

Fundraising for the endowment is ongoing, with an initial requirement of $20,000. Online contributions can be made by going to http://giveto.psu.edu. Donations also can be sent to the department at 104 Engineering Unit A, University Park, PA 16802 with “Sharron Williams Award” in the memo line.

Lori Falce writes weekly about the Rush Township/Philipsburg area. Send comments to lorifalce@gmail.com

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