Study abroad scholarship opens doors to personal growth for students

In 2013 shortly before his death, Cordell Glaus ‘51, endowed a study abroad scholarship in honor of a professor. A year later, his wife, Henrietta, met the first recipient of the scholarship endowed by her late husband, and heard first-hand what a profound impact it had on this student’s life.

Cordell Glaus had many passions, including architecture, painting and traveling. His love of travel, which he felt was deeply significant to a person’s development, along with his respect for a former professor, led him to endow a study abroad scholarship shortly before his death in September 2013.

Cordell named the scholarship after his mentor and Kent State University Industrial Arts professor, Joseph Morbito. Morbito began Kent State’s architecture program in 1947 as a two-year special course for students. Just two years later, the course had evolved into a four-year degree program.

Cordell graduated from Kent State in 1951, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Education, with a major in Industrial Arts. In 1953, he was one of the first two students to successfully earn the Ohio Architect License, and qualify as a registered architect. Cordell valued this accomplishment tremendously, and attributed it in part to everything he learned from his favorite professor, Joseph Morbito.

After receiving his Architecture License, Cordell worked with an engineering and architecture firm in Akron for eight years. In June 1961, he and other colleagues formed their own engineering and architecture firm, the Glaus, Pyle, and DeHaven (GPD) Group. Cordell had much success, which included the design of several churches as well as the Safety Building in Akron. The GPD Group, headquartered in Akron, now has satellite offices throughout the United States and also employees several Kent State graduates.

Henrietta (Henri) earned a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education in 1962, a Masters in 1966 and a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction in 1973, all from Kent State. When she married Cordell in 2003, he opened her life up to a wonderful new world of shared interests, including travel. Shortly after Henri and Cordell married, they moved to Green, Ohio. However, in 2010 they were drawn back to Kent by culture and college activity. Henri had previously endowed the Dickie-Nelson Scholarship in Education and the Sciences, and in 2013 Cordell established the Joseph Morbito Study Abroad Fund scholarship.

The first recipient of the Cordell’s scholarship is Kent State senior, Christian Ford. Christian, who plans to graduate in May 2015 with a BS in Architecture and a minor in Adaptive Reuse and Preservation, already has plans for her future.

“My goal is to work on community revitalization and repurposing,” said Christian.

Through this scholarship, Christian had been able to spend the Spring 2014 semester studying at the Kent State Florence, Italy campus. While there, she won the spring 2014 Florence Design Competition.

Henri and Christian originally met at the groundbreaking for the new Center for Architecture and Environmental Design, part of Kent State’s Foundations of Excellence Campaign. They were both eager to learn more about each other. Henri wanted to hear first-hand about the impact the scholarship was making on the life of a recipient, and while Christian has received other scholarships it was her first opportunity to meet someone close to the donor responsible for one of them. As such, the two made arrangements to meet again over lunch to talk.

During that lunch, Christian presented Henri with a letter of gratitude that expressed her deep appreciation, and also a few mementoes from Italy. She also articulated to Henri just what impact Cordell’s generosity had on her life.

“Without this scholarship,” she told Henri, “this trip would not have been possible for me as it helped cover many expenses.”

Because this is an endowed scholarship, Cordell and Henri Glaus, and the professor this scholarship honors – Joseph Morbito – will continue to have an impact on students’ lives and personal growth for years to come.

For more information on how you can impact the lives of thousands of students through donations to the new Architecture and Environmental Design building, or by establishing an architecture scholarship, contact College of Architecture and Environmental Design Director of Advancement, Marti Ring, at 330-672-0932 or

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POSTED: Saturday, November 15, 2014 03:11 PM
UPDATED: Wednesday, June 19, 2024 07:22 PM
Institutional Advancement