The Dr. Lois Gehring Experiential Learning Endowment Fund was established in Dec. 2015 to provide financial support for experiential learning opportunities for Cornell students, with first preference to support participation in international off-campus study programs.

The fund is named in honor of Dr. Lois B. Gehring, the daughter of L.E. and Alice Bigger. Lois spent most of her youth in Mount Vernon, Iowa. She graduated from Cornell (Class of 1947), majoring in biology and chemistry with election to Phi Beta Kappa. She greatly values the lifelong friendships she made at Cornell and the instruction and support of Cornell professors Howard Lane, Frank Brooks, J.B. Culbertson, Lloyd Oakland, and others. Lois earned her M.S. in bacteriology from the University of Iowa in 1949 and her Ph.D. in biochemistry from Cambridge University in 1952. Her honors and recognitions include a Fulbright Scholarship, a Public Health Service Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, a Carlisle Fellowship, and an Ernst Post-Doctoral Fellowship. Lois married Frederick Gehring in 1953, a fellow Fulbright Scholar. They had two sons, Kalle and Peter.

Lois believes that experiential learning opportunities are a vital part of Cornell College and that these opportunities allow students to build upon their liberal arts education through its application to a real-world context that advances their personal and professional development.