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Al & Lila Self

Al & Lila Self

The SELF Program was made possible through a generous donation to the KU Endowment by Madison "Al" and Lila Self. The Selfs established the program with the intent that it makes a difference in the lives of students who will then rise to make a notable difference in the world. Madison "Al" Self is a 1943 KU chemical engineering graduate, successful businessman and recipient of the School of Engineering's Distinguished Engineering Service Award in 2000. The Selfs, both native Kansans, met at KU.

In 1989, the Selfs established the Madison and Lila Self Graduate Fellowship to support exceptional Ph.D. students in business, economics, engineering, mathematics, biological, biomedical, pharmaceutical, bioinformatics, and physical sciences. This program served as a model for the Self Engineering Leadership Fellows Program, which was established in 2007. 

Mr. Self passed away in January 2013. His obituary can be read to learn more about his personal and professional successes. Mrs. Self passed away in November 2013, and her obituary can be found here. Their final estate gift of $58 million was announced in December 2014. This brought their total lifetime giving to KU to $106 million, which makes them the most generous private donors to date in the history of the university.  In recognition of their contributions to the University, a residence hall was named after the Selfs in 2015


Engineering Research Highlights

One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
23rd nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets," Military Times
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