About Us

Overview

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MISSION STATEMENT: FEF strengthens the metal casting industry by supporting unique partnerships among students, educators and industry, helping today's students become tomorrow's leaders.

Background
After WWII ended, there was a desperate need for skilled technicians and educated leaders in the metalcasting industry. FEF was established in 1947 by the leaders of the industry, with the support of affiliated organizations and societies as an independent extension of metalcasting educational programs at colleges and universities across the country. The primary objective was to bring top-quality men and women into our industry. FEF has since become the key piece to ensure top-level talent enters our Industry.

FEF has survived the test of time, providing the industry with a steady supply of technical and management-oriented people. Indeed, the single largest factor for the transfer of new technology into the work place has been FEF graduates. On average, nearly 80% of all graduating students who register with FEF and report full-time employment, take a position in the metal casting industry. In addition, many other students are exposed to the metalcasting Industry through AFS student chapter activities/membership; open foundry nights; Key Professor outreach; and other organization activities. Also, research at FEF schools has become the core of important accomplishments and developments in metalcasting. FEF provides its company contributors with a crucial link to college campuses.

Why FEF is Unique
A unique piece of the FEF puzzle is its use of a "Key Professor" at each of the schools who handles the partnership FEF has with engineering & technology education. This professor knows the students, teaches the courses, handles administrative requirements from FEF headquarters, and decides who the best students are to receive FEF funds. This personal approach is very important to the program's success. Students become aware of the metalcasting Industry through the combination of scholarships and the professor's influence. Other scholarship programs make grants only on registration or letters of intent. FEF provides important interrelationships essential to students and Professors. The FEF Key Professor is also a key contact for companies considering research, donation of supplies, recruitment, and other technical needs.

Activities
FEF students become aware of the opportunities in this Industry through meaningful scholarship support. FEF builds no war chests, yet the strength of this Foundation continues to increase through careful planning and prudent use of funds. Over $900,000 is provided each year to selected students and FEF Key Professors. FEF scholarships are very competitive on many college campuses. In fact, they are the example for other campus scholarship programs, according to surveys of the deans of each FEF certified school.

FEF offers all contributing companies access to student information via its website. Whether you are looking for graduates to fill full-time positions within your company or you need interns, summer or co-op students, you can search the database using selected criteria, as well as post your position for the students to be able to view.

The College Industry Conference, held each November, brings together what FEF is all about, students, professors, and industry leaders. FEF pays for travel, room, and meal expenses for each student delegate, and Key Professor. The Key Professor's attendance allows for networking between themselves and the industry. Companies have a unique opportunity to meet the top engineering students in the country. The Career Information Session allows a company to interview or to acquaint future leaders with their products and services. Over $58,000 in special scholarships and grants is available to undergraduate and graduate students and the FEF/AFS Distinguished Professor Award is presented to a selected Key Professor. The E.J. Walsh Award is given as special recognition to an individual showing dedication to the ideals and goals of FEF.

Administration
FEF is a lean, cost-effective program that spends less than 12% of manageable assets for operations. There are only four people who staff the FEF office: Brian Lewis, Executive Director; Maureen Gerard, Director of Resource Development; Pam Lechner, Director of Alumni & Academic Relations; and Nick Bacik, Annual Giving & Relationship Manager. Management of the Foundation includes the coordination of school oversight, students scholarships, marketing and fundraising efforts, endowment oversight, and other engagement activities.

Perpetual Endowed Scholarships/Temporarily Restricted Funds
FEF manages many industry-related scholarships (i.e. AFS chapters, companies), as well as "Living" or memorial funds. For chapters and companies, these funds are used each year for their intended purpose in the name of the chapter, the company, or the named individual. Changing of Chapter officers each year is not a problem, and duplication of efforts is reduced with FEF's established program of identifying qualified students. Memorial funds provide a permanent projection of a cast metal leader's career and, in a real sense, continue the work to which a lifetime was dedicated. The principal amount is restricted; only the earnings are used to provide scholarships to qualified students. All awards of this type carry the name of the donor, whether it is an individual, chapter or company.

FEF also provides an opportunity to raise funds for a specific purpose on a temporarily restricted basis. These funds have a defined goal dna timeline. Funds raised will be spent down to support the specific purposed defined for the fund within that timeline.

For more information on these types of funds, contact the FEF office.

Corporate Contributors
Annual contributions from companies provide the mainstay for FEF scholarships and program support. Companies are also encouraged to support the Industry Information Session at the College Industry Conference and supporting partnerships of select conference events. Extra fees are waved for company contributors and the exposure to future generations of leaders, suppliers and buyers of castings is priceless. There are several recognitions levels based on cumulative giving: Magnesium-$10,000; Titanium-$20,000; Vanadium-$50,000; Chromium-$100,000; Zirconium-$150,000; Silver-$250,000; Platinum-$500,000; Gold-$1,000,000+.

Individual Contributors
Individual support is another important piece of the funding puzzle for student scholarships and programs. Past FEF students (alumni), FEF Board Members, and friends of FEF help to protect and increase scholarships - many directed to their Alma Mater. Special recognition awards are given as an individual contributor reaches each of the following cumulative levels: Charter-$1,000; Founder-$2,000; Professor-$5,000; Dept. Chair-$10,000; Dean-$15,000; Provost-$25,000; Chancellor-$50,000; President-$100,000; Chancellor Emeritus-$250,000; President Emeritus-$500,000+. To make an individual contribution, click here.

Directed Campaigns/Special Project Campaigns
FEF knows that support for Key Professor positions and lab updates are critical to the continuing success of our students in industry. With many changes in state funding and university programs, FEF has developed a grogram of Directed Campaigns that will raise major gift funds to support endowing a professorship, help to expand a lab or replace equipment, or create a supporting fund for the laboratory in perpetuity. These campaigns have specific goals and timelines. Corporate leadership is an important component of the campaign as is the support of the school administration. Donations are made to either a permanently restricted fund or a temporarily restricted fund.

Another fundraising effort undertaken by FEF is to raise funds to support special actvities such as AFS student chapter grants, creative networking opportunities and recruitment programs to encourage students to consider going into a metalcasting program, and community outreach programs that highlight the metalcasting industry.

Saugus Society
The Saugus Society if FEF's legacy (or planned) giving society. Individuals can name FEF in their wills, life insurance policies, or IRA's as a beneficiary. Donations of securities are particularly suited to direct giving. By transferring stocks to FEF, the donor avoids paying capital gains taxes and receives advantages in deducting stock value from income taxes. Life insurance is another possibility when FEF is named irrevocable, sole beneficiary. Proceeds are excluded from the taxable estate of the insured, and annual premiums paid are considered an educational gift. Wills establish lasting and final gifts to the Foundation. These gifts provide simple and convenient ways for you to immortalize your place in cast metals higher education. Donations of other non-cash properties, such as works of art, can often realize greater tax deductions than gifts of money. Special recognition is an important part of the Saugus Society. As with all financial matters of this type, you should seek legal assistance from attorneys qualified in this area. For more information, you can review the Saugus Society brochure or call an FEF Team Member - 847-490-9200.

Special Tax Status
Donors recognize that FEF is a tax-exempt organization, under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and contributions are deductible as allowed by law. In addition, FEF is favorably classified as an organization that is not a private foundation as defined in Section 509(a) of the IRS code.

The Critical Need For Your Support
There is no bigger return on investment that individuals and companies in the metalcasting industry can participate in than to support the development of technically-skilled and passionate new talent for our industry. There is no other organization that provides the best educated talent than FEF and its network of 33 colleges and universities. FEF schools teach students in transformational academic settings that speak metalcasting and graduate more than 80% of its student base into our industry. FEF's cost-effective scholarship program has produced long lasting results for our industry, even for companies who have never hired an FEF graduate. Your investment will provide support to insure the continued strength of FEF's network of schools, creating graduates who will blaze a trail of innovation and ingenuity for our industry.

FEF is the cast metal industry's educational program at the college level. It includes four-year technology schools as well as traditional engineering colleges and graduate schools. It spans the broad range of higher education from production supervision to specialized research.

FEF scholarships are offered currently at 33 colleges and universities in North America. Scholarship recipients are selected by Key Professors at FEF schools. Size (minimum of $500 and maximum of $3,000) and number of scholarships are determined by the professors, based on the amount of money allocated to their school by FEF. FEF "Key Professors" receive financial assistance from the Foundation with discretionary funds and special awards. In addition, several special scholarships are available at the FEF website each year.

Many leading foundry people and university professors are former FEF scholarship recipients. These former scholarship awardees, along with FEF Board Members and other industry leaders, support the Foundation on an individual basis.

FEF continues to connect with educators and industry to inspire students towards a career in metalcasting. FEF provides scholarship support, supports world-class metalcasting engineering programs, encourages internships & co-ops, partners with innovative Key Professors, impacts real-world laboratory experiences, and promotes tier one research projects

The legal name of the Foundation is Foundry Educational Foundation.