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Dartmouth alum gives $10M for computation science

HANOVER — Dartmouth College alum William H. Neukom has committed $10 million to help Dartmouth become a leading academic institution in computation science, an important area of teaching and research in the 21st century.

The gift is funding the William H. Neukom Academic Cluster in Computational Science which includes three new faculty members in diverse fields who use advanced computational techniques in their work.

The gift builds on Neukom’s previous donations that led to the creation of the Neukom Institute for Computation Science.

One of the new professorships created by the gift will be a distinguished chair named for Thomas Kurtz, the pioneering Dartmouth mathematics professor and computer scientist who, along with former Dartmouth President John Kemeny, created BASIC computer language 50 years ago. The gift also will fund a postdoctoral fellow in computational science.

“My hope for these new faculty members is that they will tackle real-world problems through computational science in their own work, and also empower their colleagues and students across campus to adopt similar techniques,” Neukom said. “Dartmouth changed my life, and I’m excited to contribute to scholarship and learning that will shape a new generation of students in the Information Age.”

Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon announced the gift Wednesday at the 50th anniversary celebration of BASIC at the college.

“This is the age of ‘big data,’ and complex computational methods are absolutely critical to teaching and research throughout the sciences, arts and humanities,” Hanlon said. “With this remarkable gift, Bill Neukom honors Dartmouth’s storied past in computing, and leads us to a bright and exciting future.”

Neukom’s $10 million gift is to be matched with $5 million from a $100 million gift announced in April from an anonymous donor to support Hanlon’s vision for advancing Dartmouth’s academic enterprise.

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