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Among the many changes
of recent decades, new
professions have emerged.
Charles Collat, president and chief
executive officer for Mayer Electric Supply Company, Inc.,
watched the field of industrial distribution come of age. He also
saw positions go unfilled because
of the scarcity of educational
"If you want to go into industrial distribution," he explains,
'You're limited to about half a
dozen schools in the whole country. I knew what UAB had accomplished with its medical
programs, and I thought that UAB
would be a good place to start
with industrial distribution."
Through a foundation established to honor the founder of
Mayer Electric, Collat provided
the funds to create the Ben S. Weil
Chair of Industrial Distribution.
Then he went a step further: he
called upon other suppliers and
manufacturers to join him in supporting higher education. They
enhanced the fund, and some set
up scholarships for qualified
It is also important to Collat
that the field is thriving. Students
earning degrees in industrial distribution have glowing futures with
the very companies whose commitment has made that education
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