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Illustration by Rafal Olbinski
Illustration by Rafal Olbinski

A Gift for Tomorrow's Technology Leaders

As New Hampshire's economic star continues to rise, meeting industry's demand for qualified employees remains a critical priority for the University of New Hampshire. Now, a $7 million gift from a New Hampshire couple will create the Hamel Center for the Management of Technology and Innovation to educate leaders who can bring new ideas from concept to marketplace--with speed and with skill.

Enlightened management of New Hampshire's technological resources is critical to the state's future prosperity. The gift from Dana Hamel and his wife, Kathryn, both longtime friends and supporters of UNH, will create a new interdisciplinary degree and certificate program specifically geared to business opportunities surrounding emerging technology. Hamel, who serves on the board of directors of the UNH Foundation, is a strong advocate for the state and public higher education.

"The very best way to enrich the lives of the people of New Hampshire is to invest in the University of New Hampshire," he states. "UNH graduates play a prominent role in charting the state's cultural, social, political and economic destiny."

Raytheon Chairman and CEO Daniel P. Burnham '70G observes that the Hamel Center has the potential to make New Hampshire even more attractive to businesses in the technology sector. "At Raytheon, our managers know that innovation is critical to competing successfully in the technology marketplace; they also know that innovation alone is not enough. The other critical ingredient is leadership, the ability to link technology to market needs quickly and effectively. Technology and leadership create critical mass."

The Hamel Center will be anchored in the Whittemore School of Business and Economics and work closely with the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences, the College of Life Sciences and Agriculture, and the Entrepreneurial Campus. "This new center will teach UNH students how to shepherd emerging research into commercially viable products," says David Hiley, provost and vice president for academic affairs. "They will learn the skills that today's new economy demands of its business leaders."

The roster of planned programs includes a new master of science program that explores the commercialization of new technologies. The gift will also fund three term professorships, an executive-in-residence program, lectures and symposia, an Entrepreneurial Management Laboratory and a partnership with the Franklin Pierce Law Center to focus on intellectual property matters. The result will be a growing number of graduates familiar with New England's business opportunities and prepared to contribute to the area's sustained prosperity.

"The Hamel Center will accelerate the business-development process for both employers and employees in the technology field," says Peter Getman '90, president and principal of MicroArts, a New Hampshire-based brand-development agency. "In the last year alone," he says, "we more than doubled the number of employees from 30 employees to 65. Nearly one-third of them, including my fellow principals, Michael DesRochers '86 and Barrett McDevitt '85, are UNH graduates. Talented, focused employees with speed-to-market ability is what differentiates us."

The Hamel gift boosts gifts and pledges to more than $65 million in the University of New Hampshire's $100-million The Next Horizon campaign.

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