Pride and Passion - Giving, Snodgrass-style

Will and Terry Snodgrass
1982. The U.S. economy was experiencing a steep recession, and Will Snodgrass was about to pick up his B.S. in mechanical engineering. Would this member of the Engineering Student Council and early leader of the Industrial Roundtable job fair be able to snag employment during this scary economic time?


“I vividly remember the day during my last semester at Purdue that I got the job offer from McDonnell Douglas,” Snodgrass said almost 30 years later. “That was a good day.”

Snodgrass went directly from Purdue into a two-year management training program at McDonnell Douglas and to Pepperdine University, where he studied in the evenings to earn an MBA. 

After 23 years at McDonnell Douglas (later Boeing), Snodgrass left his position as senior manager to focus on his personal stock portfolio full-time. With his wife, Terry, a CPA and real estate investor, Snodgrass recently arranged for a gift to the College of Engineering through a living trust. 

“We structured the gift this way because it was very simple to set up — literally just adding a paragraph to our living trust,” Snodgrass said. “Having obtained a Purdue engineering degree, I feel particularly close to the College of Engineering, so I earmarked the gift to be used specifically by the dean of engineering.”

Snodgrass remembers his time at Purdue as challenging and gratifying. “I enjoyed the day-to-day campus life and friendships, and I still keep in touch with several friends — 30 years later, which seems hard to believe!”

Will and Terry Snodgrass get back to campus regularly; Will, in fact, once made a trip to his alma mater to recruit for Boeing. 

“I was impressed with the students I met,” Snodgrass said. “I have learned that Purdue engineers are a great catch. They are smart and analytical, and obtaining an engineering degree shows they know how to manage their time to get things done.”

Given his strong positive associations with his time at Purdue and the solid career path his education helped set him on, Snodgrass had no trouble deciding to contribute to the College of Engineering.

 “Purdue helps make the world a better place. It helps develop strong members of the workforce and achieves world-class research accomplishments. We want to help ensure Purdue remains at the forefront.”