Brucker Scholarship announced: Former Lerner College dean endows undergraduate scholarship in economics
Lifelong connections with University of Delaware colleagues and friends and most recently, joining the Class of 1963 50th Reunion Committee for Alumni Weekend, prompted Eric Brucker along with his wife Sharon to make a commitment to endow the Brucker Scholarship in Economics in the Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics.
Available this coming fall, the scholarship will support an undergraduate student based primarily on merit with consideration also given to financial need.
“The Delaware experience was really special to me,” said Brucker, who held positions as acting chair and chair of the Department of Economics, acting dean and dean of the Lerner College between 1975 and 1989. “At the time, we graduated the largest number of students in the college’s history and we hired many faculty so I have a warm spot in my heart for the school.”
His wife Sharon also earned her master of arts in economics from the department in 1975, making the Bruckers Double Dels, and she subsequently served as a research associate in the Department of Agricultural Economics (now called the Department of Applied Economics and Statistics) in UD’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
Brucker said the decision to fund the scholarship reflects his affinity for the University and for providing high quality undergraduate education.
“I’d like to see opportunities for undergraduate students continue and I think this is a great way for some undergraduate economics majors to get funding and give them incentive to work hard in their studies,” said Brucker.
Jim Butkiewicz, current chair of the Department of Economics, recalled working with Brucker as a new faculty member at UD and noted they became close colleagues over the years.
“I was associate dean of the college when Eric was dean,” recalled Butkiewicz. “That was my first administrative position and I learned a lot working with Eric.”
At a recent celebration for Brucker’s retirement, Butkiewicz said it was clear he remained committed through his entire career to scholarly activities.
“During his remarks, Eric recalled under his leadership the department attained recognition as one of the top 50 research productive departments in the country,” said Butkiewicz, referring to UD’s rank of 45 in Barry T. Hirsch et al’s “Economics Departmental Rankings” that appeared in the September 1984 issue of The American Economic Review. “Throughout his tenure Eric hired many faculty that played a role in that recognition and it was certainly one of his proudest accomplishments as an administrator.”
Article by Kathryn Meier