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Alumnus John Ambroseo Creates Endowed Faculty Fellowship

Honors Associate Professor Emerita of Chemistry Taina H. Chao

Purchase College-SUNY is pleased to announce a new endowed faculty fellowship created in honor of Associate Professor Emerita of Chemistry Taina H. Chao.

Alumnus John Ambroseo, CEO of Coherent Inc., was inspired by Professor Chao during his time at Purchase, and credits her for encouraging him to pursue a PhD in chemistry. A former Purchase College trustee, and long-time donor who graduated in 1983, Dr. Ambroseo was looking for a meaningful way to give back to his alma mater and encourage the next generation of chemistry professors and students.

Ambroseo said, “As a proud Purchase alum, I know how much my college experience shaped me and my future. I encountered a number of terrific professors, but no one inspired, motivated, or challenged me more than Taina. Her guidance proved pivotal in my career.  I can think of no better way to thank and honor Professor Chao for what she’s done for me and the college than to empower the next generation of educators.”

The Taina H. Chao Endowed Faculty Fellowship will provide research funds for faculty members in the School of Natural and Social Sciences, with a preference for those in Chemistry. The first recipient will be announced at a later date.

“On behalf of the college, I thank John Ambroseo for this gift, which is among the largest alumni donations we have received in the history of the college,” said Purchase College President Thomas J. Schwarz. “We hope other alumni will give back in similar ways, ensuring that this gift will help the college as it moves forward.”

Dr. Suzanne Kessler, Dean of the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences, said, “’Thank you’ is such a small phrase, but it encompasses so much. This is a beautiful way to mark a beautiful history between Taina and John, and now a new generation of scientists.”

Dr. Chao, who received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, was a full time faculty member at Purchase College from 1978 through 2011. Since then she has continued to serve the College as a part-time Associate Professor.