Accomplished entrepreneur and philanthropist Ming Hsieh has pledged $250,000 from the Hsieh Family Foundation over the next five years to support exemplary faculty in the West Virginia University Forensic and Investigative Science Program.
The Ming Hsieh Faculty Development Fund will support critical investments that enhance the ability of faculty to successfully obtain competitive research grant awards.
“This donation will greatly assist the Forensic and Investigative Science department in developing new research directions, enhance the research experience of our students, and grow the scientific support for the greater forensic science community,” said Keith Morris, Ming Hsieh Distinguished Professor of Forensic and Investigative Science.
“We are indebted to Ming for his vision of forensic science and his significant contributions to our program.”
In June, Forensic and Investigative Science will officially become a department to better reflect its national reputation and to lay the foundation for its expansion of research and outreach.
Born in China, Hsieh co-founded Cogent Inc., a manufacturer of automated fingerprint identification systems, and served as CEO and chairman until 2010 when Cogent was purchased by 3M.
Under his leadership, Cogent became a leading provider of biometrics identification systems and solutions to government, law enforcement agencies and other worldwide organizations.
Hsieh developed a longstanding interest in training, mentoring and nurturing the next generation of forensic scientists. This desire fueled his generosity toward WVU. He has given the University more than $5.5 million, including contributions for the construction of Ming Hsieh Hall on the downtown campus in 2007 and continued faculty support.
He has also established two distinguished professorships in teaching and research for the Forensic and Investigative Science department, and made possible a gift from Cogent to develop a state-of-the-art teaching and research facility for the program’s home in Oglebay Hall.
The Hsieh Family Foundation has donated more than $100 million to high schools, research institutions and universities. Hsieh has served on the University of Southern California Board of Trustees since 2007 and on the Board of Trustees of Fudan University since 2011.
In 2012, he received an honorary doctorate of science from WVU.
This contribution was made in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University. The $750 million comprehensive campaign, which is being conducted by the WVU Foundation on behalf of the University, runs through December 2015.
CONTACT: Devon Copeland, Director of Communication and Marketing, Eberly College
Follow @WVUToday on Twitter.