Columbia College professor makes record-breaking donation to school

Thursday, May 1, 2014 | 5:32 p.m. CDT
Columbia College assistant professor Barry Langford on Thursday announces his $111,000 gift to support the Tradition Meets Tomorrow campaign. Langford helped start the college's Mock Trial team, and his gift will support the Mock Trial Award, as well as scholarships for criminal justice and forensic science students.

COLUMBIA — Columbia College President Scott Dalrymple spent his first day on the job with students, faculty, staff and a record-breaking donation.

Dalrymple announced Thursday a $111,000 gift from Barry Langford, an assistant professor of criminal justice at Columbia College. It's the first time a faculty member has donated more than $100,000 to the school, Dalrymple said.

Most of the money will go toward the Tradition Meets Tomorrow campaign, a fund to buy technology for Columbia College classrooms. Some of the donation will also fund the Mock Trial Award and scholarships for students studying criminal justice and forensics.

"I wanted to enhance the knowledge of the criminal justice system with students," said Langford, who helped start Columbia College's Mock Trial team 17 years ago.

Dalrymple's background includes a stint as the founding dean of Excelsior College's School of Public Service, which included a criminal justice program.

Criminal justice is a growing field, he said. In August, Columbia College opened the Brouder Science Center, a new building that includes a lab dedicated to forensics science, according to previous Missourian reporting.

It's unusual for a faculty member to give such a generous gift, Dalrymple said, so receiving Langford's donation was an honor. It will have a positive impact on students for years to come, he said.

Tradition Meets Tomorrow has raised more than $11 million to support the arts, humanities, business, athletics, adult higher education and science, according to a news release. About 10 percent of the fund comes from faculty contributions, according to the release.

It was an exciting day for the college, Dalrymple said, and it has set a great pace for the rest of the year. "What am I going to do tomorrow?" he said.

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