A Positive Experience Becomes A Legacy

by Marketing Services - Cedarville, OH

Ed Krupka supervises student projects, employs alumni, establishes scholarships, and serves on the Technology Advisory Committee — all because of what he witnessed as a Cedarville University parent.

In 2000, while visiting friends who lived near Cedarville, Ed’s son Josh was encouraged to check out the University. After touring the campus and meeting professors, Josh knew this was the school for him. He majored in computer science, a profession he was familiar with since his dad is the president of Burris Information Technology, a division of Burris Logistics (Delaware).

As Josh grew and matured while at Cedarville, Ed’s admiration for the University grew as well. Soon Ed had two sons at Cedarville when Josh’s brother, Devin, enrolled. Ed is pleased that his youngest son also chose Cedarville as it allows him to continue to be connected with the University in an intimate way. Ed loves it here. “Every time I’m on campus, I get this feeling of being in the presence of God,” he explained.

That fondness has led Ed to look at other ways to reach out. With Josh’s assistance, a professional cooperative arrangement developed between Cedarville and Burris Logistics. “During the summer prior to Josh’s senior year, he mentioned to me the options for a senior design project and asked if there was a software development project that I would consider giving to the computer science department from Burris,” Ed explained. He went on to say that he liked the idea and settled on a project for creating orders on handheld computer devices in support of the Burris sales efforts. The proposal was accepted, and a team of students went to work on it. The project was a complete success and was placed into production just one month after its completion.

Wanting to capitalize on that positive experience, Burris Logistics continued to work with other senior design teams. The 2006 group worked on another software development project, and this year’s design team is developing a new method of Internet communication between Burris customers and the order entry department. “This project also holds lots of promise and value to Burris,” Ed happily shared.

These projects are not only beneficial for Burris, but also the students who are gaining real-world experience. “It’s been a valuable experience for the students to learn how to solve problems and work with the customer. We engage the team as professionals so there is a great deal of mutual benefit,” Ed noted. Additionally, by personally observing and utilizing the students’ work, Burris is able to assess potential employees. A number of the team members have been offered positions within the company.

The success of the design project arrangement led Ed to explore other ways for Burris Logistics to express gratitude for the students’ efforts and to continue to reach out to future Cedarville students. Funding a scholarship was a logical choice, and with Ed’s initiating, The Burris Logistics Computer Science Award was established. The annually funded scholarship is designed to assist students who have demonstrated exemplary character and scholarship under the computer science program.

In proposing a scholarship, Ed explained, “God is the master of all science, including the computer sciences. Cedarville is one of a few universities that brings the quality of technical education into a truly Christ-centered setting based on values of excellence and commitment. This environment can not be equaled or duplicated easily.”

Ed is excited that a scholarship has long-reaching impact beyond the design project experiences. “Through my position at Burris, I realize that we can’t affect every computer science student at Cedarville, but with a scholarship we can contribute to the training up of one or two students each year,” he said.

Along with the annual contribution, Burris Logistics provides annual gifts to Cedarville’s Elmer W. Engstrom Department of Engineering and Computer Science that will help endow additional scholarships for future computer science majors.

A positive experience. A relationship. And now a legacy.