Heart of SU Stories

Members of SU’s faculty and staff give for many reasons. Read some of our “Heart of SU” stories below, then e-mail heartSU@syr.edu and tell us your story.

Shiu-Kai Chin, ’75, ’78 M.S., ’86 Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science,
Interim Dean (2006–08), L.C. Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science, Donor

Shiu-Kai ChinShiu-Kai Chin was a junior faculty member in 1990, the year a budget crisis hit Syracuse University. Still, his senior faculty colleagues refused to deny tenure or defer hiring because of money. “We won’t eat our seed corn,” they said. “We’ll find another way.”

Years later as interim dean, Shiu-Kai understood how they did it. “Charitable gifts give deans and department chairs the
flexibility to recruit and retain faculty,” he explains. That’s why he’s been an SU donor since 2002–to provide L.C. Smith with the ability to grow and develop in any economic climate. For Shiu-Kai, “Giving is my vote of confidence in the future of SU.”

Margie Johnson G’02

Department of Geography, Maxwell School of Citizenship & Public Affairs, Donor
Margie Johnson’s son Kyle (right) is a 2010 graduate of Muhlenberg College. Thanks to SU’s tuition exchange benefit, both he and his brother graduated from college with minimal debt. And Margie herself earned her master’s degree from SU in 2002 through the remitted tuition benefit.

An SU donor since 1994, Margie gives back to SU because “tuition for the boys was like a $200,000 bonus,” she says. “I owe SU so much.” Today, Margie gives in support of the School of Education and to the general scholarship fund.

Kalpana “Kal” Srinivas, M.S. ’05

Assistant Chancellor, Donor
Kalpana and Vijay Srinivas“SU has done so much for my family,” says SU employee Kalpana Srinivas. She and her husband Vijay arrived in America with two suitcases and two smiles. At SU, they realized their dreams and have been donors since 2002.

Today, Vijay M.S. ’92, M.B.A. ’94, A.C.E. ’99 is senior director of corporate relations and technical alliances and Kal M.S. ’05 is assistant chancellor. Their daughter, Nina B.S. ’03, graduated from SU debt-free thanks to SU’s dependent tuition benefits, went on to podiatric medical school, and became a foot and ankle surgeon. Their son, Ajay, works at the Burton Blatt Institute.

“Our family is an American success story,” says Kal, “and our Indian heritage teaches us to share what we have. Vijay and I actually argue about where we want to designate our gifts each year!”