By Charles Harker, College of Architecture and Environmental Design


Prior to coming to Kent State University, I was principal of my own architectural design/build firm in Austin, Texas. As a principal, one of my responsibilities was to teach others professional standards. I received several compliments about the quality of my teaching effort. So later, when the opportunity to teach came along, it was an easy decision. Now, after nearly teaching 30 years in the College of Architecture and Environmental Design, I can truly say that I still love my job! The reason is simple. Our college attracts some of the brightest students on campus. Their energy and enthusiasm combined with the commitment of my colleagues have made it pleasure to work here.

I have had the opportunity to teach in design studio at every graduate and undergraduate level. I served as the coordinator for the Florence [study abroad] program for nearly a decade, and later worked closely with two fine deans. Though recently retired, I continue to teach, and hope to do so for the foreseeable future.

All this made the decision to create a scholarship to aid future students easy. My first thought was to make it available to those studying in Florence. They often cite that experience as one of the most influential experiences at Kent. But more recently I have been strongly impressed with the wonderful new graduate programs that have emerged. Now I think that the scholarship should be more flexible to take advantage of the remarkable growth of our college, so I will make the scholarship distribution “…at the discretion of the Scholarship Committee.”

For a long time I had this intent, but was uncertain about how to make it a reality. It actually wasn’t that difficult. After talking with Marti Ring, [director of advancement for the college], I found that I could create a scholarship with its intent now, and fund it through my will. I’m so pleased to be able to leave this legacy for future students at Kent State. Please consider making a gift in this way yourself.

To create a scholarship bequest in your will, contact the Center for Gift and Estate Planning at 330-672-0421.