Michael R. Delaney, an alumnus from the Auburn University College of Forestry, Wildlife and Environment, helped facilitate a gift from Delaney Development, Inc. to support funding for technology upgrades.
The gift included funding to assist in upgrading the college’s technology for summer camps, including global positioning system, or GPS, units that will be used for surveying and other related programs.
“We have always been interested in supporting the college,” Delaney said. “The opportunity to give something tangible that we felt would have an immediate impact was enough to push us forward.”
Delaney and his coworkers have strong connections to the college. Natives of Mobile, both Delaney and his twin brother, Scott Delaney, graduated from the college with a degree in forestry.
Al Derby, a 2008 graduate, chief forester and vice president, as well as Elliot Glass, a 2011 graduate, forester and wildlife biologist, both with Delaney Development, played key roles in deciding to make a gift to the college.
“Timber inventory is an important part of how our business operates,” Delaney said. “Enabling the students to learn with the most up to date equipment will give them an advantage in real world business applications.”
Scott Enebak, the college’s associate dean of academic affairs and Dwain G. Luce Professor, is heading up the initiative.
Enebak says students were unable to download data from the units or access computers due to connectivity and software compatibility issues resulting in frustration for everyone involved.
“The donation from the Delaney’s came at a great time for the undergraduate students in the forestry program,” Enebak said. “Our current GPS units were technologically limiting us to what we could do in the classroom. Delaney Development’s gift allowed us to identify GPS units as well as, state-of-the-art management and inventory software that is identical to what the forestry industry and land management companies are moving toward using.”
“We are the first college to obtain this type of GPS unit and system for in-class instruction exposure,” said Janaki Alavalapati, the college’s dean. “The Delaney Development gift of equipment is helping our students to be successful in the workplace from day one.”
(Written by Jamie Anderson)