Former UTHS Panther’s legacy making big difference for the future of students going into the trades
Kenneth and Sharon Glassman were diehard United Township High School Panther fans. The Glassmans were 1947 graduates of UTHS, and both had careers in the trades. Kenny, as his friends would call him, worked as a welder at Johnson Sheet Metal and Sharon worked at International Harvester Plant, East Moline. Before Ken and Sharon passed away, they wanted to make sure their legacy would benefit East Moline and the community they called home, forever. With a vision toward the future, Ken and Sharon Glassman established a fund at the Quad Cities Community Foundation, from which UTHS and the Area Career Center received a gift that will keep on giving to students.
In March, a $30,000 distribution was made from the Ken and Sharon Glassman Endowment Fund to purchase a new CNC machine at UTHS. The machine will be an important addition to the Career Center at UT to help educate students with an interest in skilled manufacturing careers. Alcoa also contributed $5,000 toward the purchase.
United Township Superintendent Dr. Jay Morrow, stated “due to the generosity of the Glassman Endowment Fund, in addition to Alcoa, area students will able to enhance their skill set in vocational education. With educational funding dwindling, this project likely would not have happened. United Township in conjunction with the Area Career Center is strongly committed to Career and Technical Education. The Glassman Trust and Alcoa demonstrate a similar commitment to our student’s future.”
Area Career Center Director Larry Shimmin also expressed similar views adding “as director of the United Township Area Career Center, I see a resurgence in manufacturing and the need for manufacturing skills in the Quad Cities economy. The acquisition of a Haas Vertical Machining Center provides the computer numerical control education and experience for students to gain a foothold for entry into skilled manufacturing.”
Each year approximately 50 students go through the UTHS trades program and on to a trade school. Ken’s close friends said if he knew what his legacy was doing for the Panthers now, he would be thrilled. Upon hearing details of the project, Don Sproul, a close friend of the Glassman’s said, “Kenny would be very proud of this.”