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UA Receives $500,000 From DoD
June 30, 2008

The University of Akron’s (UA) proposed new corrosion engineering program, the first bachelor’s degree program of its kind in the United States, is moving closer to development due to $500,000 in funding from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD).

The funding was given to the university in a check ceremony held in Buchtel Hall. While on campus, the DoD representatives took tours of UA’s College of Engineering and College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering, and conducted curriculum discussions with UA faculty and deans.

In response to requests from industry and the DoD, The University of Akron is seeking to establish the first comprehensive education program in the field of corrosion engineering and corrosion science. The Summit College certification courses and associate degree program will be delivered from UA’s new Medina County University Center, and the bachelor of science degree will be housed in the College of Engineering. To complement this project, funding for a new Corrosion Sciences Lab is being explored.

A 2001 report to the Federal Highway Administration noted that the direct costs of corrosion to the U.S. economy represents 3.2 percent of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product, $279 billion, and the total costs can be more than twice that amount. Additional concerns are the costs of human health and national economic sustainability based on deteriorating infrastructure, equipment and machinery. The report concluded that corrosion has a major impact on the U.S. industrial complex and associated infrastructure as well as an adverse effect on industrial productivity, international competitiveness and security.

Because the annual impact of corrosion on the DoD is estimated to be $15 billion, the U.S. Congress mandated that the DoD establish and support programs that address this issue.

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