Devon Gosnell was looking for a way to honor her parents in time for her father’s 95th birthday on Sept. 19. She chose to create the Kenneth and Helen Gosnell Scholarship at West Virginia University, which will provide financial assistance to first-year students enrolled in the Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. First preference will be given to petroleum and natural gas engineering majors.

A Braxton County, W.Va., native, Ken Gosnell earned his bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering from WVU in 1949 after serving in the United States Army during World War II, where he rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel after a stint in the reserves. He spent the majority of his 30-year engineering career in the petroleum industry, working as an underground corrosion engineer for Union Carbide and as an oil and gas engineer for Godfrey L. Cabot Corporation, Continental Oil and Ashland Exploration.

“I decided to set up the scholarship to honor my dad and my late mother on the occasion of his 95th birthday,” said Gosnell, who earned her JD from WVU in 1975. “My dad went to WVU after World War II with help from the G.I. Bill. My mom worked while my dad went to college.” Gosnell’s brother, Doug, followed in their father’s footsteps, earning his master’s degree in petroleum engineering from WVU in 1989.

“I would like to express my thanks and gratitude to Ms. Gosnell for providing the Department with this gracious and generous scholarship endowment,” said Sam Ameri, chair of the Department of Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering. “We cherish our close relationship and partnership with the Gosnell family. I have known Ken for many years, and I cherish my friendship with him. Because of financial contributions such as this, we will be able to continue to provide scholarships and professional development programs to our students, and build upon the current level of excellence in our College.

The $30,000 endowment was created through the WVU Foundation in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University. The campaign is a $750 million fundraising effort being conducted by the Foundation on behalf of the University.



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CONTACT: Mary C. Dillon