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$2 million gift honors innovative teachers

Oct 05, 2012

Good teachers can clearly explain topics to students, but great teachers inspire students and change lives. A Penn State alumni couple is honoring great teachers they have known by making a leadership gift to the Colleges of the Liberal Arts and Education with a commitment of $2 million from their estate. Through their gift, Kevin and Susan O’Leary will support an early career professor in history, graduate students in language and literacy education, and innovative teaching awards in both colleges.

Kevin is a 1971 history graduate and Susan is a 1971 education graduate. They are owners of Sunrunner Alaska Corp. and founding partners in Alaskan Leader Fisheries, the largest and most successful longline fishing fleet and processor in the country.

''Our Penn State professors inspired us to pursue fulfilling careers in business and education, and in return, we want to uplift future generations of innovative teachers at the University,'' Kevin and Susan said. ''We are personally aware of the many challenges facing teachers today, and we want to help them pursue even greater success in teaching students at Penn State and beyond.''

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