HAMMOND | Purdue University Calumet alumnus, local businessman, entrepreneur, author and philanthropist Thomas Ray Crowel is supporting an endowed athletics scholarship in honor of his alma mater’s first athletics 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 Purdue Calumet 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 Purdue Calumet 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 grades P-12. Additionally, he has been a supporter of student housing on campus.
“We are extremely appreciative of Mr. Crowel’s continued generosity and support of educational opportunities fueled by Purdue Calumet,” University Major Gifts Officer Frank Podkul said. “As a Purdue Calumet graduate and successful northwest Indiana businessman and entrepreneur, he understands the value of a quality education and the vital role Purdue Calumet plays as a provider.”
After establishing a successful sales and business career, Crowel enrolled at Purdue Calumet at age 36, earning a baccalaureate degree in three years. He has developed successful insurance and finance companies, an accredited training center for sales professionals and a chain of car washes. Also an accomplished writer, he has authored three books.
With Purdue Calumet expanding its intercollegiate athletics program to 12 sports teams during the 2013-14 academic year, the university anticipates enrollment of some 200 student-athletes next fall.