Manchester University in North Manchester, Indiana, has announced a $1.5 million estate gift from alumni John Hamer ('48) and Esther Rinehart Hamer ('50) in support of its music program.
The bequest, which will establish and endow the John L. and Esther L. Rinehart Hamer Professorship in Music, reflects the Hamers' commitment to the liberal arts and is designed to help future students find balance and enjoyment through music. Although the Hamers both participated in the program as undergraduates, they are best known for their role in identifying Lassa fever while working as medical missionaries in Nigeria. John Hamer died at the age of 95 in 2019.
"Even in this era, while science and medicine remain important, John and I hoped that Manchester would continue to have a strong music program," said Esther Hamer, who graduated with degrees in biology and music (piano performance). "Music has given balance to my life."
"The Hamer family has a rich history of philanthropy that spans many years at Manchester," said the university's vice president of advancement, Melanie Harmon. "Their generous bequest will have a lasting impact on our outstanding music program and enrich the lives of current and future students for generations."