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Wilson, G. E. and M. P. Wilson Award
The G. E. Wilson and M. P. Wilson Award was established in 2003 to provide opportunities to graduate students doing NMR research in the Department of Chemistry at The University of Akron. Friends and family of G. Edwin Wilson created this award to honor and remember the impact he had on the lives of others.
Dr. Wilson was born in Philadelphia, Pa., moved to New Jersey with his parents, and graduated from Bridgeton High School in 1957. He received a B.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1961 and a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois in 1964. As a professor of chemistry and graduate mentor, Dr. Wilson touched the lives of students at the Polytechnic Institute of New York, Clarkson University, Rockefeller University, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and Washington University in Saint Louis.
In 1984 Dr. Wilson came to The University of Akron and assumed the position of Chairman of the Department of Chemistry. He continued in this role until 1996. During his tenure as Chairman, Dr. Wilson affected the transformation of the Chemistry Department from one that was small and research inactive and awarded mainly masters degrees, into one that grants primarily doctoral degrees, enjoys federal grant support, and a recognition of excellence. He was instrumental in establishing a world-class nuclear magnetic resonance laboratory at the University. Throughout his lifetime, Dr. Wilson dedicated himself to helping others through biochemical research. When he retired from the University in 2000, he was the associate provost for research. Dr. Wilson served as an elected member of the Governing Board for the Council for Chemical Research and as a member of the MIT Educational Council. After his retirement, he continued to dedicate his time to mentoring students and public service, until he passed away at age 64, on December 10, 2003, at his home in Medina. His illness was brief, intense and, as was his style, approached with great courage.
Dr. Wilson was internationally known through his lectures, research, publications, and participation in national and international professional organizations. He was married for more than 42 years to his wife, Marcia, and also is survived by children: Kristine Susan Beard and her husband, Scott, of Canton; Karin Elaine Rilley and her husband, Michael, of Columbus; Jennifer Lynn Beaven and her husband, Matthew, of Akron; and Kiersten Beth Wilson of Medina. He also is survived by grandchildren: Sean Wilson and Zachary Paul Rilley, and Nicholas William and Connor Michael Beaven.
The G. E. Wilson and M. P. Wilson Award will provide financial assistance to graduate students in the Department of Chemistry at The University of Akron engaged in NMR research. Each year, a committee of faculty members in the Buchtel College of Arts and Sciences Department of Chemistry will select student recipients. The award will be used to provide a supplement to the standard graduate student stipend. Selection of the awardees will be based on merit and the students’ potential to make significant contributions to science through their work.