On Friday, Oct. 26, the Boise State Stueckle Sky Center Skyline Room filled with Boise State respiratory care alumni, faculty, staff, and friends in celebration of National Respiratory Care Week for the third Respiratory Care Alumni and Friends Celebration.
The celebration provided attendees with an overview of the departments’ success over the year and an opportunity for Tim Dunnagan, dean of the College of Health Sciences, to announce the new Merrick Family Endowed Professorship in Respiratory Care, a gift given to the department by David and Kay Merrick.
David and Kay Merrick are among Boise State’s elite philanthropists with decades of student and department support. David Merrick served as the medical director for Boise State’s Department of Respiratory Care for more than 30 years. His passion for patient care was matched only by his love for teaching.
Due to his leadership, and dedication, Boise State is nationally recognized as a leader in respiratory care clinical preparation. The gift of the Merrick Family Endowed Professorship in Respiratory Care is regarded as the ultimate recognition achievement and will forever bolster the department he helped create.
“Our department is beyond lucky to have been able to maintain this long-standing relationship with the Merrick family,” said Lutana Haan, assistant dean for the College of Health Sciences and associate professor and chair for the Department of Respiratory Care. “Dr. Merrick brings joy to any situation and his sense of humor makes us all smile everytime we think of him. We are fortunate that his impact on our department will continue to make a difference forever into the future. This endowment will allow us to expand our research and positively impact the lives of our patients.”
Endowed professorships recognize the distinction of faculty members’ prominence in their respective fields, while providing invaluable financial support, above and beyond salary, for use in research, teaching and service activities.
As the university continues to grow and advance the status of its research enterprise, endowed chairs and other endowed positions are increasingly important to competitively recruit and retain the excellent faculty who nurture our students, create new knowledge and maintain Boise State’s trajectory of innovation.
“The value of an endowed professorship cannot be overstated, said Dunnagan. “The permanence brings a level of academic prestige to the department, as there are less than 10 faculty endowments within Boise State University and, because of our generous donors, the College of Health Sciences is one of them. These endowments enable people to create innovative ways of teaching and a permanent line of funding for research and service to greatly benefit the student experience.”