Alfa Laval endows scholarship fund
By Liz Crumbley
Spectrum Volume 20 Issue 30 - April 30, 1998
Alfa Laval Thermal Inc. of Richmond has awarded a $100,000 scholarship endowment to the Virginia Tech Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME).
The Alfa Laval Thermal Inc. Scholarships in Mechanical Engineering Fund will help support rising seniors in ME who have demonstrated academic excellence and who have an interest in learning the business applications of engineering through business courses and participation in internships and cooperative education.
"Business skills are increasingly important to engineers and engineering students," said Charles Reinholtz, ME assistant department head. "The Alfa Laval endowment will help us ensure that our students learn about business issues that are vital to engineers working in industry today."
Through the leadership of Alfa Laval Thermal President Kirk E. Spitzer, who received his degree in industrial and systems engineering from Virginia Tech in 1967, the company began actively recruiting ME students at Virginia Tech in 1993.
Spitzer and his successor, Sven Sjogren, also are working with ME Department Head Walter O'Brien to establish research projects in the department on behalf of Alfa Laval Thermal.
This potential research cooperation could lead to increased knowledge of the advanced technology that Alfa Laval Thermal has contributed world wide to solving the industry's more difficult heat-transfer problems. In the heat-exchange industry, Spitzer said, there is an increased emphasis on true "two-phase" flow, and this area of research is well suited to Virginia Tech's academic and laboratory strengths.
Alfa Laval Thermal Inc., a subsidiary of the international Alfa Laval Corporation based in Sweden, is the world's largest supplier of heat exchangers and refrigeration equipment.
The ME department, the second largest in the Virginia Tech College of Engineering, is consistently rated in national surveys as one of the top 25 departments of its kind in the nation.