The School of GeoSciences is exceedingly fortunate to have generous alumni and friends who provide financial support for a range of areas, from student bursaries to funding for research projects and investment in our research facilities. Here, we put our donors in the spotlight.
Our experience of student support and interaction with students and the Academic and Development staff of The University of Edinburgh has been the most rewarding experience of our retirement.
On 28 November 2013, Derek and Maureen Moss were awarded the distinction of ‘University Benefactor’ by the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Sir Tim O’Shea. They received the award in recognition of their substantial financial support to students and facilities at the University of Edinburgh since 2006.
Although not themselves Edinburgh alumni, Derek and Maureen have so far provided bursaries and scholarships to no fewer than 36 students, mostly within the School of Geosciences. They also supported the purchase of a Pyrolysis Kiln for research into Biochar, which has the potential to improve agricultural and horticultural production.
After Derek’s retirement from IBM in 1989, he and Maureen travelled extensively throughout large parts of the world. Two visits to Antarctica in the 1990s impressed on them the need for action on global warming, and they decided to take up an active interest in this area.
Through Derek’s involvement with the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, they came into contact with the School of GeoSciences. Just two weeks later they decided to leave their entire estate for the benefit of postgraduate students at the University of Edinburgh. Their subsequent decision to make significant life-time donations has meant that they have been able to enjoy seeing the difference their support is making to so many students.
Derek and Maureen Moss hope that their experience will inspire others to derive the same satisfaction from donating to student support, and other areas of work, at the University. In its turn, the School of GeoSciences is tremendously grateful for their generosity.