Montana Tech alumnus donates $35,000, with additional matching challenge


A Montana Technological University alumnus has made a $35,000 donation to the university and set forth an additional $35,000 matching gift to inspire others to give.

Frank Trask III graduated from the School of Mines in 1964 with a bachelor’s degree in geological engineering. He returned to complete his master’s degree in mining engineering in 1968 while working on a fellowship granted by the Anaconda Copper Mining Company. After graduating, Trask was sent to Australia by the Company, where he went on to a long career in various prospecting, lime manufacturing, chemical manufacturing, and chemical research endeavors. During his years in Australia, he became an Australian citizen and raised a family. Trask’s father also graduated from the School of Mines in 1936 with a degree in geological engineering.

Trask’s gift will be allocated to The Class of 1964 Undergraduate Research Program Support Endowment. The endowment funds research opportunities for undergraduate students. The Class of 1964 was inspired to establish their fund after seeing the fundraising success of the Class of 1962. Lee Saperstein, a ’64 alum and classmate of Trask’s, explained that the members of the Class of 1964 chose to support undergraduates research on the Montana Tech campus, a major component of Montana Tech’s new strategic plan. He said the education they received from the Montana School of Mines gave them a fantastic start in life. He hopes the ’64 Fund will help the university’s rise to national prominence.

Trask’s additional $35,000 gift to the ’64 fund will be used as a matching challenge to others. Trask hopes his contribution and the gifts of others will further Montana Tech’s movement toward becoming a nationally recognized STEM university. Saperstein, who first met Trask in their freshman Chemistry class, said he will increase his annual donation to Montana Tech and specify that all of it go to the ’64 Fund. He urges his classmates to do the same.