American Chemical Society to honor Ciba for supporting science education

WASHINGTON, Aug.11, 2009 — The American Chemical Society (ACS) will use the occasion of its annual Heroes of Chemistry dinner to honor the Ciba Foundation for a $2 million gift in support of science education and the development of future scientists.

The Ciba Foundation made the donation this past spring in keeping with its mission to advance science education and develop chemical practitioners. The Ciba Foundation is a separate legal entity from the Ciba Corporation, which was recently acquired by BASF.

“We are delighted to receive the generous gift of $2 million from the Ciba Foundation,” said ACS Executive Director and CEO Madeleine Jacobs. “The gift is the largest corporate contribution the Society has received since its capital campaign in the late 1980s and it is a sincere honor for us to have Ciba’s legacy entrusted to the American Chemical Society.”

“We pledge our careful stewardship of the contribution to chemistry made by the innovative scientists who have been part of the success of Ciba Specialty Chemicals,” Jacobs added. “Ciba’s commitment to helping develop the next generation of chemists in this tradition will have an enduring impact on our profession and in our communities. We will be proud to share Ciba’s outstanding heritage of discovery with the students and young scientists who will be the beneficiaries of the endowed programs set up through this gift.” 

The Ciba grant creates an endowment to support programs assisting economically disadvantaged youth who show an aptitude for the chemical sciences. The ACS Project SEED is such a program, providing high school students with summer research internships. The Ciba grant will support a minimum of six Ciba SEED scholars and will provide college scholarships for nine Ciba Specialty Chemical Scholars.

The foundation’s gift also establishes endowments to provide travel grants for post-doctoral and early career chemists to attend ACS meetings and for high school, undergraduate, and graduate students to attend ACS green chemistry or sustainability meetings.

In announcing the grant, Ciba said the gift is part the foundation’s mission “to develop the next generation of leaders who will lead the chemical and related industries in developing innovative solutions to address the world’s most pressing problems; to honor the proud heritage of Ciba scientists who over the years have made outstanding contributions to science aided by their close association with ACS; and to preserve the Ciba Specialty Chemicals legacy of improving science education in the United States by investing in youth.”

The Heroes dinner is a black-tie event scheduled for Sunday evening, Aug.16, at the Park Hyatt Washington Hotel here.


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Judah Ginsberg