More than 250 former and current Fellows gathered with members of the Strnad family for dinner, speeches, and a celebratory toast to the 50th anniversary of the University School Strnad Fellowships in Creativity Program. Keynote speaker James Park '94, CEO and founder of Fitbit, spoke about his Strnad Fellowship and his career path to inventing Fitbit.
The program enables juniors and seniors with an outstanding ability and passionate interest in a particular area to pursue advanced independent projects. Students have worked in biomedical engineering, medical research, and built a hydroelectric generator. They have designed furniture, created jewelry, composed music, produced films, and pursued countless other projects.
The Strnad Fellowships in Science were established at US in October, 1968, by the late James J. Strnad '42. In 1981, the fellowships were extended in scope to embrace advanced creative inquiry not just in science, but in all fields of intellectual endeavor.
Since 1968, Mr. Strnad's vision and his family's continued financial support have provided 692 US students with unique and often life-changing learning experiences. "Early on, I sensed the greatest value of the Fellowships was building self-confidence," Mr. Strnad once said. "And I always believed that once a bright person acquires self-confidence there is nothing he may choose to do that he cannot accomplish."
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