Gregory McMichael Mechanical Engineering and Aviation Memorial Scholarships

Gregory McMichael Mechanical Engineering and Aviation Memorial Scholarships

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January 25, 2021

The Vincennes University Foundation in conjunction with the family of Gregory McMichael has established two new scholarships.  The Gregory McMichael Aviation Memorial Scholarship and the Gregory McMichael Mechanical Engineering Memorial Scholarship will help students facing economic barriers to pursuing their degree in one of these programs.  The Aviation Memorial Scholarship will benefit students at the Aviation Technology Center (ATC) in Indianapolis.  The Mechanical Engineering Scholarship will assist students on the Vincennes Campus.

Florence McMichael, Gregory’s mother, speaking on behalf of the family stated, “Greg was an artist, inventor, master carver, master wood worker, world traveler, cook and cat lover.  As a teen, he drew plans and made a tank.  He melted lead to make the treads.  He moved to Germany and learned carving.  He returned home and built an English Tudor house for his parents.  Then he started a cabinet shop.  He retired at 50 years of age and bought an airplane.  He built his hangar and also many more at Skylane Airport.  He designed and built tugs and/or tows for airplanes, boats and helicopters which he sold all over the world.”

“The word ‘can’t’ was not in his vocabulary.  At the age of 65 he earned his engineering degree.  Greg passed away at the age of 67 from lung cancer.”

These scholarships are intended for first-year, full-time students who show a financial need.  However, they will be considered for renewal for the second year if “academic progress” is shown to be achieved. 

“The aviation scholarship will provide funding for students in our aviation maintenance program to achieve their goals of becoming an aircraft technician,” stated Michael D. Gehrich, Director of Aviation at Vincennes University.  “This program requires expensive tools and books.  Often financial aid doesn’t cover these expenses which creates a hardship for the student.”

By that same token, Curt Coffman, Dean of the College of Science, Engineering and Mathematics said, “Mechanical Engineering is a demanding major.  When you can provide financial assistance to a student, it removed the worry of making ends meet and frees them to focus on their academics”.

In advancing the University’s missions of higher education and community service, the VU Foundation, through the generosity of its donors, administers endowments and contributions established by corporate and individual gifts as designated. Additionally, the VU Foundation coordinates department funds and grants received by VU programs. More information is available by visiting the VU Foundation, or by calling 812-888-4510.