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Four Urbana campus graduate students win FMC Fellowships

Released 5/14/2007

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Each of nine University of Illinois graduate students – including four from the Urbana campus – has been awarded a $9,000 FMC Technologies Inc. Fellowship for the 2007-2008 academic year.

The annual fellowship program, established in 1971, honors outstanding graduate students in business administration, economics, engineering, finance or related fields. FMC is a Chicago-based corporation that produces chemicals and machines for agriculture and industry.

The recipients from the Urbana campus are Avon Fernandes of Urbana, David Meixner of Hinsdale and Myra Nam of Urbana, who are pursuing master’s degrees in electrical and computer engineering; and Ricardo Flores of Champaign, who is pursuing a doctorate in business administration.

The winners were chosen by a committee representing FMC, the U. of I. and the U. of I. Foundation.

The FMC Technologies Inc. Scholarship Fund, formerly called the FMC Educational Fund, was established as the Link-Belt Educational Fund in 1963 by a donation by U. of I. alumnus Bert A. Gayman, a Link-Belt executive. A few years later, Link-Belt merged into FMC Corp.

Gayman, a Champaign native who earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at the U. of I. in 1897, spent his entire career with the Link-Belt Co. in Chicago and chose to remain an anonymous donor to the educational fund until 1973, a year before his death.

The fund provides more than $100,000 annually for undergraduate scholarships and graduate fellowships at Illinois.