Search Menu
Photonics Media Photonics Marketplace Photonics Spectra BioPhotonics Vision Spectra Photonics Showcase Photonics ProdSpec Photonics Handbook
Full company details
MapThe International Society for Optics and Photonics
1000 20th St.
PO Box 10
Bellingham, WA 98227-0010
United States
Phone: +1 360-676-3290
Fax: +1 360-647-1445

UCF and SPIE Announce $250K Scholarship Fund

Photonics Spectra
Aug 2020
SPIE has announced the establishment of the Soileau Family-SPIE Optics and Photonics Undergraduate Scholarship Fund for the University of Central Florida’s (UCF) College of Optics and Photonics (CREOL). The $125,000 in funding from SPIE is being matched in full by a gift from the Soileau family to create scholarships for undergraduate students at CREOL, with preference given to students who are first-generation college students.

“This generous gift from M.J. and Cheryl Soileau establishes accessible and future-focused opportunities for undergraduate students studying optics and photonics at UCF CREOL,” SPIE president John Greivenkamp said. “It gives us great pleasure to come together with the Soileau family in order to create this scholarship fund — one with a particular emphasis on the inclusion of first-generation students — which will support current and future generations of optics and photonics scientists and engineers in perpetuity. In addition, this collaborative effort holds special significance for us since M.J. is both a former SPIE president and board member, as well as an SPIE Gold Medal recipient.”

“I learned early that wealth does not equal worth,” said M.J. Soileau, who was a first-generation college student. “My family is pleased to partner with SPIE to support scholarships for students studying optics and photonics to help them realize their worth.”

“As an international leader in optics, lasers, and photonics, UCF provides opportunities for students from all backgrounds to explore their passion in this critical field,” said UCF president Alexander Cartwright, also a first-generation student, an SPIE fellow, and a researcher in the area of optical sensors. “It is an honor to recognize this second UCF investment as part of SPIE’s Endowment Matching Program. Coupled with the Soileau family’s generosity and M.J.’s legacy in optics and photonics, this gift will help many of our students discover their full potential and impact as scholars.”

The SPIE Endowment Matching Program, established in 2019, is a $2.5 million, five-year, educational-funding initiative designed to increase international capacity in the teaching and research of optics and photonics. SPIE supports optics and photonics education and the future of the industry by contributing up to $500,000 per award to college and university programs with optics and photonics degrees, or with other disciplines allied to the SPIE mission. The initial SPIE contribution to the University of Arizona named a new endowed faculty chair, the SPIE Chair in Optical Sciences. Another matching agreement announced earlier this year established the SPIE-Glebov Family Optics and Photonics Graduate Scholarship Fund for UCF CREOL.

More news & features
back to top
Facebook Twitter Instagram LinkedIn YouTube RSS
©2023 Photonics Media, 100 West St., Pittsfield, MA, 01201 USA, [email protected]

Photonics Media, Laurin Publishing
x Wish you were here? Click to become an exhibitor today.
We use cookies to improve user experience and analyze our website traffic as stated in our Privacy Policy. By using this website, you agree to the use of cookies unless you have disabled them.