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Gift from Jedel Family Trust establishes Opportunity Fund for KU Honors Program

Tuesday, October 18, 2016


LAWRENCE — A $400,000 gift commitment from the Jedel Family Trust will establish the Harrison Jedel and Jeff Weinberg Scholars Opportunity Fund for students in the University Honors Program at the University of Kansas. The opportunity fund will be used to support pre-medical and engineering students in the KU Honors Program as they seek to enhance their academic career at KU.

Jeff Weinberg, a KU alumnus, a trustee of the Jedel Family Trust and one of the honorees for whom the fund is named, was a cousin of the late Harrison Jedel.

Weinberg served the university in several capacities before retiring in 2014 and returning to KU as an honors fellow in the University Honors Program. He came to KU in 1970 as assistant director of student financial aid and was subsequently named assistant vice chancellor for student affairs. He served as assistant to Chancellor Robert Hemenway, a role he held for Hemenway’s entire chancellorship and then continued under current Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little.

Harrison Jedel was a Kansas City, Missouri, native. He served in the Army and upon graduation from the University of Oklahoma joined his family business in Kansas City. He died in September 2016.

“Harrison Jedel knew there were exceptional opportunities open to students who were admitted to the KU Honors Program,” Weinberg said. “This fund will allow students to enhance their education, and their lives, by participating in such activities.”

C. Bryan Young, director and associate professor with the University Honors Program, said the support will enable transformative opportunities for students in engineering and the pre-medical field, such as study abroad, conference attendance and participation in substantial service activities.

“We are so grateful for the generosity of Harrison Jedel and the trustees of the Jedel Family Foundation,” Young said. “This gift is a wonderful tribute to Jeff Weinberg and recognizes his commitment to the students in the KU Honors Program.”

KU Endowment is the independent, nonprofit organization serving as the official fundraising and fund-management organization for KU. Founded in 1891, KU Endowment was the first foundation of its kind at a U.S. public university.


Course offerings are “among the most comprehensive in the nation,” according to “A Review of Fifty Public University Honors Programs”
98% of University Honors Program graduates are employed or accepted to graduate school within six months of graduation
40% of students in the University Honors Program conduct research before graduation
9 to 1: Average ratio of KU honors students to faculty advisors
1 of only 7 programs nationwide to receive a top rating from “A Review of Fifty Public University Honors Programs” in 2014
60% of University Honors Program students study abroad
KU honors students select their advisors from top-ranked KU faculty
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