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Endowed Scholarship Supports STEM Disciplines at Fisher

January 9, 2020

A new scholarship fund at St. John Fisher College will benefit undergraduate or graduate students studying disciplines in the natural sciences, thanks to the generosity of alumnus Michael E. Haefner.

Banners on a wall in the Integrated Science and Health Sciences Building showcases the many disciplines students can explore at Fisher.

A member of the Class of 1982, Haefner studied mathematics at Fisher before completing a master’s degree in computer science at SUNY Buffalo. Launching his career at Eastman Kodak, his work history includes positions with Sabre Holdings and American Airlines.

For the last decade, he has held leadership roles with Atmos Energy Corporation. Based in Dallas, Texas, Atmos Energy is one of the nation’s top natural gas distributors. Haefner joined Atmos as the senior vice president for human resources, and was named president and chief executive officer in 2017. This fall, the company established the Michael Haefner Atmos Energy Scholarship on the occasion of his retirement.

Longtime supporters of Fisher, Haefner and his wife, Christine, are founding members of the Spire Society, which benefits the College’s Annual Fund. The new $500,000 endowed scholarship will help offset the cost of tuition for undergraduate or graduate students studying computer science, mathematics, data analytics, or closely related discipline, including cybersecurity or statistics.  

“We are grateful to Atmos Energy for honoring Mike’s impact and legacy at the company by establishing a scholarship that bears his name,” said Phil Castleberry, vice president for institutional advancement. “This gift will have a profound impact on generations of Fisher students as they pursue studies in STEM disciplines.”