Amid Growing Skepticism About Elite Universities, Alumni Dig Deep for Financial Aid

Amid Growing Skepticism About Elite Universities, Alumni Dig Deep for Financial Aid

There’s been growing criticism that donors exacerbate inequality by funneling billions to wealthy universities with a poor track record of boosting economic mobility. Two huge scholarship gifts show a different path forward.

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A "Wasted Opportunity?" Unpacking Michael Bloomberg's Mega-Gift to Johns Hopkins

A "Wasted Opportunity?" Unpacking Michael Bloomberg's Mega-Gift to Johns Hopkins

Bloomberg’s $1.8 billion gift to his alma mater has attracted a range of criticisms. We sort through which are fair and which aren’t—and how his detractors miss a central issue in the debate over higher ed and philanthropy.

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Making the Transition: A Gift to Acclimate First-Time Students to an Elite University

Making the Transition: A Gift to Acclimate First-Time Students to an Elite University

While donors are giving big to provide disadvantaged students access to elite colleges, the real work often begins once the student arrives on campus. A big gift to an Ivy League school will scale a successful initiative to help first-gen students adjust to college life.

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“Paying the Way Forward.” Another Big Campus Gift for Financial Aid

“Paying the Way Forward.” Another Big Campus Gift for Financial Aid

The University of Michigan is wrapping up a historic fundraising campaign that’s pulled in $5 billion and counting. Of the many mega-gifts it received, we dig into one that is solely earmarked for financial aid and reflects growing donor concern around issues of affordability.

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The Best Return on Investment: How a Campus Donor from Finance Sees His Philanthropy

The Best Return on Investment: How a Campus Donor from Finance Sees His Philanthropy

A major donation to UT Austin’s business school provides an illuminating look into how donors hailing from the world of finance perceive ideas like “value” and “impact,” concepts which aren’t nearly as clear cut to these givers as you might think.

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Key Ingredients: A Mega-Gift Captures the Higher Ed Fundraising Zeitgeist

Key Ingredients: A Mega-Gift Captures the Higher Ed Fundraising Zeitgeist

A big donation to Brown University combines three donor priorities that are currently shaping the higher ed giving space: support for capital projects, funding for the liberal arts, and eliminating student loans and debt.

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Another Big Gift for Economic Diversity at an Elite School. Will It Make Any Difference?

Another Big Gift for Economic Diversity at an Elite School. Will It Make Any Difference?

As Ivy League universities work to recruit more low- to middle-income students, the Perelman family's $65 million gift to Princeton raises familiar questions around the best way for higher ed donors to boost economic mobility.

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"Redefining the Financial Model." A College Goes All-in On Philanthropy to Reduce Tuition

"Redefining the Financial Model." A College Goes All-in On Philanthropy to Reduce Tuition

Confronting the perception that its $60,000 price tag puts it out of reach for most families, St. John’s College’s $300 million fundraising campaign focuses on slashing tuition and eschews costly capital projects.

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College Dreams: A Community Foundation With a Big Focus on Scholarships for Local Students

College Dreams: A Community Foundation With a Big Focus on Scholarships for Local Students

The Oregon Community Foundation is the top grantmaker in its state and one of the biggest community foundations in the U.S. It also funds one of the largest private scholarship programs of its kind in the nation.

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"A Moral Imperative." Exploring the Idea of Donor-Funded Free Tuition

"A Moral Imperative." Exploring the Idea of Donor-Funded Free Tuition

More campus donors are keen to cover tuition costs and free graduates from decades of debt. This can make for great copy, as a big recent gift to NYU’s medical school showed. But is it the most effective use of philanthropic dollars?

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Less Uncertainty, Greater Opportunity: An Immigrant Entrepreneur Steps Up to Help International Students

Less Uncertainty, Greater Opportunity: An Immigrant Entrepreneur Steps Up to Help International Students

With immigrant donors representing a rising force in higher ed philanthropy, we dig into a gift from a Mexican-born entrepreneur attuned to the obstacles facing international students in these uncertain times.

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"We Have No Choice." As Women's Colleges Turn Coed, Will Donors Get On Board?

"We Have No Choice." As Women's Colleges Turn Coed, Will Donors Get On Board?

As women's colleges struggle with shrinking enrollment, some have begun admitting men, often to the dismay of alumni. We look at how this shift is affecting fundraising at one school in Virginia—and beyond.

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Across the Finish Line: What's Behind a Campus Gift From Netflix's Reed Hastings?

Across the Finish Line: What's Behind a Campus Gift From Netflix's Reed Hastings?

It's a good thing when socioeconomically diverse kids get into college. But graduating can be the hard part. A recent gift from Hastings—best known for funding charter schools—addresses this challenge.

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"A Moral Imperative." What's This Finance Guy Doing to Help Kids Succeed?

"A Moral Imperative." What's This Finance Guy Doing to Help Kids Succeed?

When Wall Streeters turn to philanthropy, education is often their top cause. We talk with Steve Klinsky about how he was first drawn into giving for K-12 and why he's now turning his attention to the student debt crisis. 

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