Clayco Foundation supports neurological research and scholarships


UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Major gifts from the Clayco Foundation, the nonprofit arm of Clayco, Inc., will support neurological research at Penn State Health and need-based undergraduate scholarships in the College of Engineering. A real estate, architecture, engineering, design-build and construction firm, Clayco is currently partnering with Penn State to complete renovations of East Halls, and through these gifts, the company hopes to extend its partnership with the University.

“We are delighted that Clayco has chosen to support Penn State students and faculty through philanthropy,” said Rich Bundy, vice president for development and alumni relations. “The range of the company’s gifts, from neurological research to architectural engineering, reflects the extraordinary breadth of the work taking place at Penn State that is made possible through private support.”

The Clayco Neurological Research Fund at Penn State Health, created with a gift of $270,000, will support the neurological research of Dr. Kerstin Bettermann, whose work promises to aid understanding of cerebroretinal vasculopathy (CRV), a rare, incurable genetic disease, and other cerebrovascular diseases.

CRV has impacted individuals close to Clayco and is thus a philanthropic priority for the company. Marked by the progressive loss of small blood vessels in the brain and retinas, CRV results in mini-strokes that cause progressive central nervous system degeneration. The disease typically affects patients in midlife and leads to death five to ten years after diagnosis.

“CRV and other cerebrovascular diseases are under-studied, but they cause great suffering in many patients,” said Bettermann. “Clayco’s gift will help me to do what is most meaningful to me: Perform research to understand cerebrovascular diseases so we can find better treatments and a cure for these devastating diseases.”  

A goal of Clayco’s gift to Penn State Health is to enhance collaboration and shared findings between Bettermann and other researchers working on CRV. Clayco’s gift has already enabled Bettermann to begin enrolling CRV patients into a new research study that will involve collaborations with Penn State’s Heart and Vascular Institute. Her future plans include partnering with CRV researchers from Washington University of St. Louis who have also benefited from Clayco’s philanthropy.

In addition to advancing neurological research, Clayco’s gift will support students with financial need in the College of Engineering. Created with a commitment of $125,000, the Clayco Design-Build Scholarship will support undergraduates with financial need who are majoring in Architectural Engineering. The first scholarships will be awarded in the spring of 2018.

The University will match this portion of Clayco’s gift 1:1 through the First-Time Endowed Scholarship Donor Matching Program, doubling the endowment principal and the funds available to students in perpetuity. An initiative of A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence, the First-Time Endowed Scholarship Donor Matching Program encourages donors to endow their first scholarship at the University. The program will continue until June 30, 2021, or until available matching funds have been expended. 

“Clayco is committed to bettering communities not only through the services we provide our clients, but also through philanthropy,” said Kirk Warden, vice president of Clayco Corporation. “We have been delighted to partner with Penn State on the East Halls renovation project, and now we are delighted to deepen this partnership with a gift to support Penn State students and faculty. We look forward to seeing the great things Penn State architectural engineering students and Dr. Betterman will achieve with our support.”

The University recently selected Clayco to design and build the West Campus Parking Garage at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.

Private gifts from alumni and friends have been essential to the success of the University’s historic land-grant mission to serve the public good. To fulfill that mission for a new era of rapid change and global connections, A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence is focused on the three key imperatives of a public university. Private support will keep the doors to higher education open and enable students to graduate on time and on track to success; create transformative experiences on Penn State campuses and around the globe that tap the full potential of Penn Staters to make a difference; and impact the world through discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship. To learn more, visit

About Clayco

Clayco is a full-service, turnkey real estate development, master planning, architecture, engineering and construction firm that delivers clients around the world the highest quality solutions on time, on budget, and above and beyond expectations. With $1.691 billion in revenue for 2016, Clayco specializes in the “art and science of building,” providing fast track, efficient solutions globally for commercial, institutional and residential related building projects. For more information visit

The Clayco Foundation contributes its time, talent and resources to projects that support education, the arts, medical research and disaster relief; build communities; and create opportunities for people of color, youth and low-income individuals.


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Mark Armagost

Manager, Development and Alumni Relations, Corporate Foundation Relations




Widely acknowledged as one of the top Architectural Engineering programs in the world, the Penn State AE Department is dedicated to providing outstanding academic excellence to all of our students. The AE program is focused on preparing students and conducting research in the design, engineering, and construction of building projects.

Department of Architectural Engineering

104 Engineering Unit A

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802

Phone: 814-865-6394