Stevens Institute of Technology Invites Founding Family’s Descendants Back to Campus

Stevens Family Members to Reunite After More Than 30 Years

9/13/2012

Hoboken, N.J. – Stevens Institute of Technology is honored to host a reunion of the family which bears its name on campus on Oct. 6, 2012.

Stevens, founded in 1870, is named for a distinguished family of engineers and inventors who have made tremendous contributions to the nation’s maritime and railroad systems. The Stevens family reunion will be the first in more than 30 years.

“We are thrilled to host this gathering for the Stevens family and share with them what our University is all about,” said Edward Eichhorn, vice president for development at Stevens. “We have many activities planned, including a tour of campus, a reception at the New York Yacht Club and a presentation from a family historian about their ancestors’ role in America’s scientific and technological progress.”

Stevens family members have contributed greatly to American history. They were the inventors of pioneering models of the steamboats and railroads that became the foundation of the commerce system in the NY/NJ region. They also designed the elongated explosive shell for naval artillery, double-hulled and double-ended ferry boats, pile-lined ferry slips, the iron T-section rail now in use throughout the world, and steam-driven ironclad warships.

One family member, John Cox Stevens, headed the syndicate that, in 1851, built the schooner “America” that defeated the British challenger for the Hundred Guineas Cup, now known as the America’s Cup. In mid-October, Cox Stevens will be inducted into the National Sailing Hall of Fame.

Other notable Stevens family descendants throughout the years include Millicent Fenwick, a former member of Congress from New Jersey who was also appointed by President Reagan as the first U.S. Ambassador to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome., a U.S. Ambassador to Spain, a casualty and a survivor from the Lusitania, a member of the first class of the U.S. Naval Academy, Jonathan Reckford, the current CEO of Habitat for Humanity International and more.

“The Stevens family paved the way for innovation and entrepreneurship and it’s that same entrepreneurial spirit that resides at Stevens today,” said Stevens President Nariman Farvardin. “With our vibrant education and research programs, there is a deeply rooted culture of innovation and a desire to impact the world, which we can attribute to the founders of the institution.”

Stevens, The Innovation University™, has more than 6,000 students and 37,000 alumni. Alumni have leadership positions in many industries including construction, power generation, telecommunications, green energy, biotechnology, transportation and the financial community. 

More than 400 descendants of the Stevens family throughout the United States were invited to October’s event.

About Stevens Institute of Technology

Founded in 1870, Stevens Institute of Technology, The Innovation University™, lives at the intersection of industry, academics and research.  The University's students, faculty and partners leverage their collective real-world experience and culture of innovation, research and entrepreneurship to confront global challenges in engineering, science, systems and technology management.

Based in Hoboken, N.J. and with a location in Washington, D.C., Stevens offers baccalaureate, master’s, certificates and doctoral degrees in engineering, the sciences and management, in addition to baccalaureate degrees in business and liberal arts.  Stevens has been recognized by both the US Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security as a National Center of Excellence in the areas of systems engineering and port security research. The University has a total enrollment of more than 2,400 undergraduate and 3,700 graduate students with more than 450 faculty. Stevens’ graduate programs have attracted international participation from China, India, Southeast Asia, Europe and Latin America as well as strategic partnerships with industry leaders, governments and other universities around the world.  Additional information may be obtained at www.stevens.eduand www.stevens.edu/news.