Supporting a passion: A story of giving

Chemistry has always been a passion for Lester Krogh. From his time as a doctorate student to his 40-year career at 3M, Krogh enjoys telling stories of his own life in science, as well as hearing stories about current science and engineering students.

Krogh started the Lester C. and Joan M. Krogh Endowed Fellowships, two fellowships that give financial support to chemistry students in the College of Science and Engineering.

Supporting the college has been a part of Krogh’s life since shortly after graduation. His annual $100 donation gradually increased as his career progressed.

Today, it helps graduate students in chemistry each year. Pointing to the cost of tuition while he was a student, Krogh knows his assistance means more than ever now.

“Tuition was $88 my freshman year,” Krogh said. Each year, he attends a dinner where he meets the students he so generously helps. “It is fun to talk with them. They are all very appreciative,” Krogh said.

Upon graduation, Krogh joined 3M and began a 40-year career in research and development. His work contributed to the rise of 3M with groundbreaking products like the current office desk fixture, Post-it® notes. Today, the company annually records more than $20 billion in net sales.

Krogh enjoys sharing the stories of his successful career with a future generation of chemists, like the students he generously helps each year.

“I enjoyed earning the money in my career, but I also definitely enjoy giving it away,” Krogh said. “It puts some spirit in the old bones.”