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The Cogburn Engineering Legacy

The Cogburn Engineering Legacy
Dr. Cecil O. Cogburn of Fayetteville passed away on June 11, 2013 at the age of 94, but through his generous planning he ensured that future generations would have an opportunity to further his work. His financial gifts helped Arkansas Tech develop a Master of Science degree in nuclear engineering and also funded a nuclear engineering scholarship.

Dana Moseley, director of gift planning at Arkansas Tech, remembers that in her 10 years of working with Dr. Cogburn he always had a love for Arkansas Tech and nuclear engineering. To date, he and his estate have donated almost $900,000 in support of Arkansas Tech. As a result, the addition to Corley Hall at Arkansas Tech that opened in 2011 is named in Cogburn's honor.

In many ways, Dr. Cogburn was the father of nuclear engineering education in the State of Arkansas. After serving in the U.S. Air Force during World War II, Cogburn returned to Arkansas. He earned bachelor and master degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville; and taught there from 1947-89. The recipient of a National Science Foundation faculty fellowship to study abroad, Cogburn earned his Ph.D. from the University of London in 1970. He later continued his military services in the U.S. Air Force Reserves, attaining the rank of Colonel.

In addition to the generous gifts left by Cogburn's estate, and of equal significance to Arkansas Tech, are the teachers who followed in Cogburn's footsteps: Dr. John Krohn, Dr. Randy Culp and Mr. Stan Apple. All three were Cogburn mentees who have served in the mechanical engineering department at Arkansas Tech for many years.

Cogburn and his wife, Kathryn, were married for 62 years. Their only son, Thomas Harrison Cogburn, died in an accident in 1990.
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