Kinzenbaw gift provides support for research and student scholarships in agricultural and biosystems engineering

AMES, Iowa – Through a generous gift from Jon E. and Marcia A. Kinzenbaw of Williamsburg, Iowa, the Iowa State University Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering has established support for students studying technical agriculture, women studying agriculture engineering and technology, and faculty research in agricultural and biosystems engineering.

“Iowa State has a long history of developing future leaders with the drive to discover engineering and technology solutions to agricultural problems, and supporting research that sparks innovation,” said Amy Kaleita, chair of the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering. “We are deeply grateful for the Kinzenbaws’ generosity and investment in the future of agricultural and biosystems engineering.”

Since 1905, the department has been a leader in providing engineering and technical solutions for agriculture, government and industry. The nation’s first agricultural engineering program has evolved to include environmental stewardship, plant and animal production, biorenewable energy, biobased materials, farm safety, occupational safety, advanced manufacturing and innovation in off-road equipment design. The undergraduate and graduate programs are both consistently ranked first or second in the country by U.S. News & World Report.

Focused on supporting research and education, the Kinze Manufacturing ABE Faculty Research Fund will provide faculty in the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering with resources for developing needed technology, enhancing teaching and continuing research to meet the current and future demands of the agriculture industry.

The Kinze Technical Agriculture Scholarship will help support undergraduate students majoring in agricultural engineering or agricultural systems technology who demonstrate an interest and passion for agriculture or farming. In addition, the Kinze Scholarship for Women in Agriculture Engineering and Technology will help encourage and support the education of the next generation of women in agriculture engineering and farming.

“Kinze has hired engineers and engineering interns from Iowa State for years,” Jon Kinzenbaw said. “The consistent quality of the students, both in their knowledge and character, speaks volumes about Iowa State’s engineering program. For these reasons, and with this donation, Marcia and I are proud to continue our support of Iowa State as it educates the next generation of ag engineers and farmers.”

The Kinzenbaws own Kinze Manufacturing, Inc. headquartered in Williamsburg, Iowa. The company began in Ladora, Iowa, in 1965 as a welding, repair and custom metal fabrication shop. Over time, Kinze has grown into one of the largest privately-held agricultural equipment manufacturers in the United States. The Kinzenbaws’ daughter, Susanne Veatch, serves as president of the company and received her bachelor’s degree in finance and management information systems from Iowa State. Marcia Kinzenbaw received a bachelor’s degree in home economics education from Iowa State. Jon Kinzenbaw received an honorary degree from the university in 2018.

In honor of the Kinzenbaws and the company they established, a laboratory in Sukup Hall will be named the Kinze Manufacturing Measurement and Control Systems Lab. The teaching space focuses on developing students’ skills in advancing, analyzing and assessing agricultural and biological systems through hands-on training in software development and hardware interfacing of sensors for monitoring, control, data acquisition and systems modeling. Open-ended student projects in this space encompass all focus areas within the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering.

The Kinzenbaws made their charitable gift through the Iowa State University Foundation, which is a private, nonprofit organization committed to securing and managing gifts that benefit Iowa State University.