Steven Petchon

Faculty inspired investment in students

In the seventies, computer science was a course requirement many business school students dreaded, but for Steve Petchon, FOX '80, once he got his feet wet, he never looked back. Although he received his degree in accounting, he pursued a career in computer technology. His first job was working part-time as a student computer services consultant for Temple University. Shortly thereafter he launched his 28-year career with Accenture, ultimately becoming a partner and senior executive responsible for technology competency. Having retired in 2008, Steve credits his experiences in the Department of Computer & Information Sciences for shaping his career and inspiring his philanthropy.

“The faculty in the CIS department taught classes extremely well, giving students plenty of freedom to experiment with computers and learn in their own way. The professors took the time to mentor me and encourage my involvement in computing technology and in Temple’s local Association for Computing Machinery chapter where I was part of team of four that went on to compete at the national level—a pivotal point in determining what I wanted to spend my life doing.”

The Petchon Family Computer and Information Science Endowed Scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate who has demonstrated academic excellence in Computer & Information Science. “Temple paved the way for me,” explains Steve. “I support student scholarships because a CS degree is a wonderful degree to have—it will open doors.” In addition, the Steven Petchon ACM Endowment provides funding for activities of the Association for Computing Machinery chapter at Temple.

“Investing in students is my way of giving back in an area where I think others can benefit tremendously and to say thanks to the faculty for what they have done for me. College is very expensive today compared to what it cost when I attended, and supporting education is a great way to help CST grow in a positive direction.”