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Article - UNMC alums understand the importance of entrepreneurs and philanthropy

UNMC alums understand the importance of entrepreneurs and philanthropy

UNMC alums understand the importance of entrepreneurs and philanthropy

UNMC alum Dr. Linder will now lead efforts for innovation, partnership and development.

Posted: Thu, Jun 30, 2011

Promoting entrepreneurship is a top philanthropic goal of Karen and Dr. Jim Linder, UNMC alums and philanthropists.

Dr. Linder, a pathologist and longtime faculty member, recently took on a new role with the university – president of the University Technology Development Corp. He will help unite University of Nebraska researchers with the private sector to turn ideas into products that can create new companies and new jobs.

The Linders are among the principal benefactors for the Michael F. Sorrell Center for Health Science Education at UNMC. They have also helped select artwork that is displayed on the UNMC Campus.

Here, they discuss their philanthropic goals:

We believe in and enjoy contributing our time and labor, as well as financial support to achieve community goals.

We're both Nebraska natives, raised by humble families with strong work ethics. In priority employment roles at the University of Nebraska Medical center we separately established educational programs in the School of Allied Health Professions and the College of Medicine. So we have a deep sense of loyalty and pride to the state and its institutions.

Most of our efforts and public contributions have been in education, the arts and entrepreneurship. We've donated to our alma maters because we trace our success to our educational foundation. Supporting students through scholarships and improving educational facilities strengthens those who will follow our footsteps. Through enormous private support, the students at UNMC now have great learning environments, incorporating technology for lecture and study spaces. We've enjoyed selecting artwork for those buildings, created by over 100 Nebraska artists. For the students, art makes those buildings feel more like home.

The arts are fundamental to the human experience; they fuel creativity, drive innovation and improve the community. We support and volunteer with several major Nebraska art organizations. This broadens the cultural experiences in the community, and improves the appreciation of Nebraska artists, who bring so much value to life. Art and science can both be very visual. Our professions, Karen as a cytotechnologist and Jim as a pathologist, can sometimes be reflected in art. One of Karen's paintings, "Petals," in the Sorrell Center is similar to what one would see if glandular cells were viewed under a microscope.

Our third interest, entrepreneurship, is vital to every community and intimately linked to creativity and education. We are energized by our interaction with young entrepreneurs, business incubators, start-up companies, angel investors and university faculty who strive to grow our economy. The jobs created by new business create opportunities for all Nebraskans, but particularly our youth.

We want future generations to have the choice to enjoy life in Nebraska.

The most successful gifts make something happen that otherwise would not. Because government resources almost always fall short in meeting public needs, philanthropy is essential.

To make something happen at UNMC with your philanthropic gift, you can visit campaignfornebraska.org/unmc.

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