University community invited to memorial service for Chancellor Shankel

Posted on Aug 13, 2018 in Campus News and News

Strong Hall | Del Shankel memorial service
The University of Kansas community is invited to celebrate the life of Chancellor Del Shankel on Saturday, August 18 in Woodruff Auditorium at 4 p.m.

The service will feature remarks by Chancellor Douglas A. Girod, KU Alumni Association President Heath Peterson and former Kansas Athletics Director Sheahon Zenger, as well as faculty colleagues and family members who knew Chancellor Shankel best.

Chancellor Shankel passed away in July at the age of 90. He leaves behind his wife, Carol, their two children and two grandchildren, and countless Jayhawks whose lives he touched.

You can learn more about Chancellor Shankel’s remarkable life by reading Chancellor Girod’s message to the university sent July 12. The Alumni Association also sent an email to members with remarks from Heath Peterson.


Remembering Chancellor Shankel

Posted on Jul 12, 2018 in Campus News and News

Del Shankel
Dear Jayhawks,

The University family lost an extraordinary Jayhawk and truly dedicated leader early this morning, when Chancellor Emeritus Del Shankel died in Lawrence. Shankel twice led KU through pivotal transitions as interim chancellor, from 1980 to ’81 and 1994 to ’95. The Kansas Board of Regents officially designated him KU’s 15th chancellor in 1995.

Del ShankelDel began his KU teaching career in 1959 in the department of microbiology. He rose quickly to professor and earned numerous teaching awards, while also serving in interim roles as dean, athletics director, vice chancellor for academic affairs, executive vice chancellor, and, for six months in 2004, interim president of the Alumni Association. With his trademark wisdom, humor and compassion, Del guided the Association through a critical transition. I met him when I worked as a student employee of the Association, and through the years he has graciously offered his trusted counsel and encouragement to me and to many members of our staff. All of KU’s recent chancellors have relied on Del as a special adviser and confidante whose dedication and knowledge of KU are unsurpassed. In 2010, KU dedicated the Delbert M. Shankel Structural Biology Center on West Campus.

The Alumni Association’s staff, national Board of Directors and loyal alumni everywhere remain forever grateful to Del, and we extend our heartfelt condolences to his wife, Carol, daughters Kelley and Jill, and his entire family. There is no better Jayhawk than Del.

Rock Chalk,

Heath Peterson, d’04, g’09


Chancellors Archie Dykes, Del Shankel, Bernadette Gray-Little, Gene Budig, Robert E. Hemenway at the Oread Hotel for the Hilltop Honors reception
Chancellors Archie Dykes, Del Shankel, Bernadette Gray-Little, Gene Budig, Robert E. Hemenway at the Oread Hotel for the Hilltop Honors reception in 2010.

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Jayhawks return to the Hill for Science Camp reunion

Posted on Jul 7, 2016 in Campus News and News

50-year Science Camp reunion |

In the summer of 1966, 25 high-school graduates who attended KU’s Science Camp were selected as research apprentices from a pool of 100 participants. Fifty years later, nine of those former apprentices returned to the Hill for a reunion at the Adams Alumni Center.

“Everybody was thrilled to see all the different people,” says Jim Bredfeldt, c’70, m’74, a reunion attendee. “Of course we told the usual war stories. But we also talked about what we’ve done and where we are now.”

Chancellor Emeritus Del Shankel, who directed the camp from 1965 to ’68, hosted the attendees and gave them a tour of campus during the two-day event.

“It was really very nice,” says Shankel, assoc. “It was especially nice to see that a bunch of smart, nice kids had turned into a bunch of successful, nice adults. I really enjoyed seeing them.”

The camp, which promoted and enhanced science education for high-school students, was part of the Midwest Music and Arts Camp and was partially funded by the National Science Foundation, which in 1965 provided $5,065 for the apprenticeship program and $21,525 for the general camp.

As participants in the apprenticeship program, students enjoyed the privilege of returning to campus the following summer to test their science skills and assist University faculty members in their laboratories. Of those chosen in 1966, seven went on to attend KU, and the majority pursued advanced education, obtaining doctorates and master’s of science degrees.

Photo courtesy Jim Bredfeldt

Back Row: Bonner Bowden, c’70, Bullard, Texas; Ben Withers, Houston; Phil Coop, Memphis, Tennessee; Tanai Starrs, Aspen, Colorado; Edith Lord, c’70, Rochester, New York.
Front Row: David Paden, d’70, Lawrence; James Bredfeldt, c’70, m’74, Bellevue, Washington; Michael Terrin, Baltimore; William Wehrbein, Lincoln, Nebraska.

—Heather Biele

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