Years after graduating from MIT, Don Shobrys, an engineer and a consultant, agreed to serve on the Annual Fund Board. The experience, he says, got him “hooked.” Since then, he has volunteered extensively at MIT. His service includes stints on the Athletics Visiting Committee and the Corporation, as president of the Alumni Association, and as co-director of the Venture Mentoring Service, which he found particularly rewarding.
Shobrys and his wife, Carol Aronson, a process control expert, also contribute financially to MIT, focusing on the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research. Both say they’ve thrived in environments of interdisciplinary collaboration in their careers, and they value this trait in the Koch Institute.
“The Koch is a microcosm of MIT in that you’ve got all kinds of disciplines working toward a common goal of cutting-edge cancer research. I think MIT does a better job than most institutions in being able to actually move forward on interdisciplinary initiatives,” Aronson says. “Cancer requires this type of approach.”
Shobrys and Aronson have set up a charitable remainder unitrust at MIT and designated their funds for the unrestricted use of the Koch Institute. “We wanted to help provide a predictable, sustainable future source of revenue,” Shobrys says. “That’s important if you are going to innovate and evolve.”