A lifetime of learning and adventure

Cy and Carmen Elting want to help others experience education at home and abroad.

Cy and Carmen Elting are people who take learning very seriously. In 1964, Cy earned his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Kansas State University before earning his MBA at Purdue University. After working as a chemical engineer, he joined the Peace Corps and moved to Peru to help support small business development. There, he met a friend who invited Cy to meet his family in Barcelona. It was because of this invitation, Cy met Carmen.

Carmen grew up in the Catalan region of Spain. While taking an English class to develop her work at the Barcelona stock exchange, she met Cy. Still an enthusiastic learner, Carmen has continued to take classes at Washburn University near their Topeka, Kansas, home such as Mayan-South American studies, French, history, fine arts and American history.

Education is something Cy and Carmen want to help others experience so they created planned gifts to support K-State departments of Chemical Engineering and Modern Languages. “We did not have children and I began thinking, ‘Where are we going to leave what we have?’” Cy said. “I decided to leave something to K-State.”

The Eltings wanted to honor both the department which launched Cy’s career and their love of Catalan culture, language and experience. They reached out to Jenna Brown of the KSU Foundation who connected them to both departments. Together with Dr. Rebecca Bender of K-State’s Department of Modern Languages, they came up with ideas that mean a lot to Carmen and Cy — for classes in Catalan and study abroad experiences — that will have the greatest impact on students.

“I knew that Catalan was not normally taught in the university. [With this support] students can go to Barcelona during their program and discover Catalonia,” Cy said. “The department wants to do more than teach the language. They are interested in discovering the Iberian Peninsula …” Because of Cy and Carmen’s support, K-State will be able to offer study opportunities in Catalan culture and language.

The Eltings hope their bequests and story can be a catalyst to encourage other K-Staters to give where it matters to them.

“Classes in engineering, mathematics, physics and more gave me an interest in learning that I have kept all my life. I felt the quality of my education, and I had no doubt I’d leave money to engineering,” Cy said. “We have also wanted to leave something toward Catalan studies. It is growing in global importance and it has meant so much to us.”

If you would like to talk to someone about creating a planned gift for what matters most to you at K-State, call 785-775-2000 or email giftoptions@ksufoundation.org. We’ll connect you to people who can help. Visit us online at ksufoundation.org to learn more.

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Meghann Winkler

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Dylan Zheng

Marlow Murphy-Hosler Student Gift Officer