Veague Investment Pays it Forward

Jumpstarting Environmental Careers

September 20, 2013

Peter Schwartzman with students

Rick '79 and Anne Johnson Veague '80 believe in paying it forward. When their son, Thomas Veague '12, was able to jumpstart his career in environmental advocacy thanks, in part, to the sponsored internship he received as a Knox student, the Veagues wanted to make the opportunity available to other Knox students.

Because Peter Schwartzman, associate professor of environmental studies, had such an impact on their son's academic experience, the Veagues named the fund in his honor. This summer, the Schwartzman Environmental Fund supported three internships: Jason Deschamps '16 spent the summer with the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation in West Africa; Zoe Marzluff '15 interned with Growing Power in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and Max Potthoff '14 interned with Environ Consulting in Shanghai, China.

Max Potthoff with co-workers in Shanghai, ChinaDuring his internship, Pothoff had the opportunity to research groundwater and soil remediation regulation in China, Thailand, and Japan. "I've been able to directly apply terminology and information that I learned from the hydrology course that I took at Knox this year." He has learned that despite America's pollution problems, the standards secured by the EPA are used as a reference in many countries. Read more about Pothoff's internship.

"Internships are needed to introduce students to the real world and give them an opportunity for possible employment," said Rick Veague. He hopes that the internships he and Anne support will enhance the environmental studies program and reflect well on the college. "Anne and I are excited that Knox was able to move this from inspiration to reality so quickly. This is a really good investment in the future."

For Max Potthoff, alumni support has not only given him opportunities he didn't believe were possible, but has given him confidence in his future. "When alumni have faith in the institution they graduated from, it really adds to the hope all of us [students] have, that we are on an exciting life treck."

Interested in funding an internship opportunity? Contact the Office of Advancement  or call 888-566-9265.