Facebook pixel Ehlen Donates Salary to Support Archers, Establish ETR Fund

Ehlen Donates Salary to Support Archers, Establish ETR Fund

Steve Ehlen donated his salary to benefit Archers.After being asked to teach classes during the spring semester, Steve Ehlen, retired supervisor of the Engineering Technology Center and engineering technology department instructor at St. Louis Community College-Florissant Valley, chose to donate his salary to benefit current and future students.

His salary of approximately $2,100 was used to establish the Engineering Technology Retention Fund.

Sarah MacDougal, alumni relations and annual fund coordinator with the St. Louis Community College Foundation, said she enjoyed working with Ehlen on the project and welcomes others to contribute to the fund.

 “We’re excited, happy and very grateful,” she said.  

The purpose of the fund is to encourage and inspire deserving students regardless of race, creed, sex, or national origin to pursue engineering technology at STLCC. Funds may be used to provide financial assistance to students in the engineering technology program. Funds will be distributed based upon availability and may be used to pay for tuition, travel, project expenses, books, supplies, and license application fees.   

Recipients of the funding must: 

  1. Be enrolled as a full or part-time student at St. Louis Community College, pursuing a degree in engineering technology.
  2.  Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 and be in good standing.
  3.  Demonstrate financial need as determined by the division dean and/or engineering technology program director and confirmed by the financial aid office.

When the alumnus turned supervisor/instructor turned retiree returned to campus to teach, Ehlen said he was inspired to act because of students’ needs. 

“There used to be a time when you could buy 20 resisters for 7 cents apiece, and now these things are $7. The students are being challenged by Mr. McGovern to come up with better and better projects so it’s like, ‘I can’t build the standard widget that everybody else is building, I have to build a turbo widget,’” Ehlen said.

During his 45 years in the department, Ehlen said hands-on learning is what really makes the difference.

“We can talk in front of the board all the time, lecture, show them formulas but when you get in and you let the smoke out of a part that you weren’t supposed to, you learn so much more,” Ehlen said.

His wife Lisa Ehlen, Tom McGovern, professor of mechanical engineering, and Steve White, dean of math, science, engineering, and technology, attended the check presentation held earlier this month. 

White hopes the fund makes the engineering technology program even more appealing to current and future Archers. 

“Not all students are attracted to higher education when they think of lectures and maybe they don’t have a traditional career in mind. Maybe they are thinking more on the invention side or the prototype side or working with their hands. We want to show that we have programs for this, and this ETR Fund is going to go a long way,” White said.  

“On behalf of St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley, Steve, thank you very much for doing the legwork to get us to this point, because from here, the sky’s the limit.”

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