Miami Alumna Among Hundreds Impacted by Longtime Professor
Dr. Alan Engel was headed to the Art Institute of Chicago before an advisor in high school pushed him to consider political science.
It was there that he learned the important role that advisors play in students' lives, and he went on to impact hundreds of students as an advisor and professor of political science at Miami University.
One of those students, Lynda Kerzic Given '77, recently found a way to honor Dr. Engel by creating a fund in his honor, supporting the advisor position within the Sue J. Henry Center for Pre-Law Education in the College of Arts and Science.
"When I started discussing this gift with Miami, we got to the end of all the details, and I realized that we needed a name," Lynda says. "I did not have to think twice; I wanted to name it after Dr. Engel."
Lynda has chosen to make a gift this year to endow the fund so that immediate support for the Pre-Law Program will be available. Additionally, she has chosen to provide future support to grow the endowment through a bequest.
Lynda and Dr. Engel had not seen each other since her graduation from Miami 43 years earlier, but the two reconnected through a Zoom call where she shared the news of her gift with Dr. Engel, his wife, Sondra Engel M. Ed. '72, and their two sons, Reed Engel '83, MA '85, MA '86, and Drew Engel '84.
"I would like to say to Lynda," Dr. Engel says, "thank you so much from the bottom of my heart for what you have done, not only to honor me, but more importantly to provide support and provide real assistance to an area of academia that ordinarily goes unsung, but which is, nonetheless, vitally important."
Lynda is equally grateful for Dr. Engel's influence on her life and career. She knew she wanted to attend law school since she was 6 years old, and Dr. Engel's guidance helped her envision that path.
"He was my pre-law advisor, that was one of his assigned roles at Miami, and as a junior and a senior, I definitely took him up on the opportunity to talk to him about going to law school," she says.
"You absolutely set me on fire with the classes you taught," Lynda said to Dr. Engel. "Thank you for everything you did for me."
Lynda's gift will support exceptional advisors in the Sue J. Henry Center for Pre-Law Education whose role is supporting students pursuing studies and careers in the field of law.
"Making this gift and reconnecting with Dr. Engel has been an absolutely wonderful opportunity," Lynda says. "It brings back so many memories, and it helps me recall not just the classes that we had together, but how that established a solid foundation for my future career. Dr. Engel was the inspiration for it all."
To learn more about how you can honor a mentor or loved one with a gift from your estate, please contact Miami's Office of Gift Planning at 513-529-1286 or GiftPlanning@MiamiOH.edu.