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Car auction funds more STEM scholarships

Hinds Corvette

Hinds and OC

Gene W. and Helen M. Hinds Scholarship Endowment was established through generous gifts from Hinds Instruments, Inc., and Gene and Helen Hinds. Hinds Family Scholars are worthy students from churches of Christ in the Pacific Northwest majoring in math, mechanical or electrical and computer engineering, nursing, or the physical sciences.

The endowment began with an initial gift of $250,000 to Cascade College, a sister school to Oklahoma Christian University. Funds were available to support Cascade's STEM students who later transferred to OC. The name was changed to the Gene and Helen Hinds Scholarship Endowment after another $150,000 was donated to the fund in 2005.

Cascade closed in 2009, and the endowment transferred to OC, and remains as part of the Northwest Endowment Fund of scholarships.

The Hinds family are great friends of the university and employ OC alumni as engineers and in other roles.

Hinds Instruments celebrates 50 years in business with a full year of activities that culminated on June 1, 2021. They restored a 1971 Corvette! The car that was built the same year of the company's founding is a true collector's item.

Continuing the Hinds' spirit of generosity, the car was donated to a charity auction. Proceeds were divided three ways (1) to Abilene Christian University where Gene began college as an engineering major, (2) one third to the Colorado School of Mines where Gene transferred to finish his degree, and (3) to OC to benefit the Hinds Instruments Endowment.

The Hinds family support for STEM students is preparing OC students to be the world's next change-makers. At OC, students hash out beliefs together to learn, change and grow in faith that is directly applied to science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The Hinds Instruments Endowment will continue to impact our world for the next 50 years, and beyond, through the good work of scholarship recipients.

Hinds Instruments

Hinds Instruments, Inc. co-pioneered with the late Professor James Kemp, physicist at the University of Oregon, the development of photoelastic modulators (PEMs) for the advanced measurement of a wide range of polarization properties important to academic and industry researchers and professionals worldwide.

Professor Kemp used the PEM to measure the polarization of light emitted from stars, thereby proving the existence of magnetic “white dwarf” stars. This discovery provided the evidence used to award the Nobel Prize in physics to an astronomer at the University of Chicago (Chandraheskar) who had predicted the existence of such stars more than 40 years earlier. Building on Dr. Kemp’s frequently-cited and award-winning astrophysical work, Hinds Instruments developed and sold the first commercial versions of the PEM in the early 1970s.

Over the next couple of decades, the company developed a body of important PEM IP and technology, including a broad PEM product line. Significant contributions were made that have enabled notable advances in basic scientific research and industry, including optical lithography, CD spectroscopy, tokamak plasma monitoring, and many others.

More recently, the company’s scientists and engineers have extended the powerful utility of polarization modulation to systems dedicated to specific applications, including Exicor® birefringence measurement for flat panel display and other precision optics, polarization extinction ratio systems, 2-MGEM Ellipsometry systems for nuclear fuel OPTAF measurement, complete and partial Mueller matrix measurement systems, and more.