HAMMOND | Thomas Ray Crowel, a Purdue University Calumet alumnus, local businessman, entrepreneur, author and philanthropist is supporting an endowed athletics scholarship in honor of his alma mater’s first athletic director and longtime coach, Bob Hayes.
A gift from Crowel will establish the Thomas Ray Crowel Athletic Scholarship Endowment. Scholarships from the endowment will be awarded to PUC student-athletes.
“Bob Hayes is synonymous with Purdue Calumet athletics,” Crowel said. “His tireless efforts enriched wonderful opportunities for many Northwest Indiana student-athletes. Seeing the commitment Purdue Calumet is making to intercollegiate athletics, I am pleased to dedicate this gift in honor of Bob Hayes.”
In 2004, Crowel also endowed the university’s Thomas Ray Crowel Scholarship in Education — four, $25,000 awards.
A year later, he provided support for the first endowed PUC professorship, which enabled leadership for the university’s newly-established Center for Science and Technology Education. The center advances improved science and mathematics learning among at-risk students in preschool through grade 12. Additionally, he has been a supporter of student housing on campus.
“On behalf of the Peregrines, we are very grateful for Mr. Crowel’s generous support,” PUC Athletic Director Rick Costello said. “His contribution allows Purdue Calumet student-athletes to seek academic and athletic excellence. Equally important, his gift enables our student-athletes to develop leadership skills by focusing on teamwork, perseverance, persistence and resiliency in the face of adversity.”
After establishing a successful sales and business career, Crowel enrolled at PUC at 36, earning a baccalaureate degree in three years. He developed insurance and finance companies, an accredited training center for sales professionals and a chain of car washes. He has authored three books.
With PUC expanding its intercollegiate athletics program to 12 sports teams this academic year, an enrollment of some 200 student-athletes is anticipated.