University Advancement

Office of Planned Giving
John Dodge House
507 Golf View
Rochester, MI 48309-4488

(248) 370-3698
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Al Monetta and Bruce Voss

Charter class graduate Al Monetta, SEHS '63, remembers a different Oakland University. In the early '60s, he recalls, the University's landscape felt more like a small-town high school than the internationally acclaimed college that it is today. There were no dorms, and OU founder Matilda Dodge Wilson's farmland was within clear view, but the curriculum was rigorous.

"It was really nice then because you knew a lot of people even though most of us commuted," says Monetta, who received his bachelor's degree in secondary education in mathematics and history.

A tight-knit campus led Monetta to develop a close relationship with James H. McKay, Ph.D., a professor of mathematical sciences and one of OU's first instructors.

"I had a class taught by him almost every semester because there were only two or three professors teaching mathematics," Monetta remembers. "He was my first professor there, and he was easy to work with. There was never an issue to directly ask Dr. McKay for help."

McKay taught at OU for more than three decades before retiring. He passed away in 2012, but his legacy continues through two endowments that have been established in his honor to benefit students in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. Now Monetta and Bruce Voss, his partner of 40 years and now husband, have apportioned a percentage of their trust to be bequeathed to McKay's endowment.

Monetta's family didn't have the means to pay for school outright. Scholarships helped ease the financial burden on his family and allowed him to finish school in four years. Now his contribution will do the same for other students.

László Lipták, current chair of the mathematics department, says he hopes their bequest inspires others to give. "We are extremely grateful for this generous gift. Their commitment acknowledges the impact of the exceptional education the University delivers and will allow us to support a greater number of students for generations to come."


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