The Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Division at Harford Community College recently purchased an Anatomage Table, a technologically advanced visualization and virtual dissection tool for anatomy and physiology education, which has been shown to increase student learning gains. Long-time donor and friend of the Harford Community College Foundation, alumnus Robert Pyle contributed a significant portion of the funds for the STEM Division to purchase the table.
An Anatomage Table is a state-of-the-art 3D interactive dissection table that allows students to virtually explore human bodies in a way once only accessible through cadaver dissection. By swiping the table, anatomical features are revealed in vivid detail. For example, students can zoom in to enlarge structures as small as nerves and blood vessels. STEM Dean Pamela Pape-Lindstrom said, “We are extremely grateful to Mr. Pyle for his gift towards the purchase of the Anatomage Table. The Table will bring an innovative approach to instruction and increase student engagement and student learning in our anatomy and physiology courses.”
Robert and Mary Ann Pyle visited the Harford Community College campus on September 23 for an in-person demonstration of the Anatomage Table. Tami Imbierowicz, Professor of Environmental Science; Ben Ondimu, Assistant Professor of Biology; Wendy Rappazzo, Professor of Biology; and Susan Walker, Assistant Professor of Biology, attended the demonstration along with several Harford students. During the visit, Dean Pape-Lindstrom coordinated a tour of Aberdeen Hall, and Dr. Theresa B. Felder, President of Harford Community College, thanked the Pyles for their generous gift that assisted in purchasing the table.
The Pyle family has been generous to the College for years. In 2003 the Pyle family legacy to provide financial support to students at Harford began with the creation of the Aberdeen High School Class of 1951 endowment by Robert’s father, LeJeune “Shorty” Pyle. The endowed funds provide scholarships to Harford students who are graduates of Aberdeen High School, have financial need, are enrolled full-time and possess a 3.00+ cumulative GPA (Grade Point Average).
The Pyle Family STEM Endowment was established in March 2022 with a generous gift. The funds are designated for the use of the Harford Community College STEM Division as determined by the Dean of STEM. Robert became involved with the management of the endowment as his father grew older.
Seeing firsthand the positive impact scholarships were providing to students, Robert decided to give back to the institution that helped prepare him for his future. Robert attended Harford in the 1980s and played on the College’s soccer team. He earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in Meteorology from Pennsylvania State University. In 1987, he moved to Boulder, Colorado to work in a NOAA laboratory as a computer programmer researching climate change. He decided to change careers and attended the University of Colorado to earn an MBA in Finance. In 1996, Robert started Diversified Asset Management, Inc., a wealth management firm in Boulder, Colorado. “I have always been interested in STEM activities since high school,” said Robert. “Both of my sons are STEM majors in college, and so funding for STEM initiatives at Harford was a perfect fit for our entire family.”