College & Workforce Readiness

Ed. School Fund Drive Tops Goal

By John Gehring — February 23, 2000 2 min read

Harvard University’s graduate school of education has raised more than $111 million with its first comprehensive capital campaign. The amount, which school officials said last week was the largest sum ever raised by a U.S. school of education from private and public sources, far surpassed the original goal of $60 million.

“It was so successful because we were able to get some very wealthy people to come to the school, and they saw what we really do,” Dean Jerome T. Murphy said last week, adding that he was “stunned” at the campaign’s success. “They really got turned on by our projects and our values.”

Jerome T. Murphy

The money raised in combined personal gifts and research awards includes $51 million in new endowment funds. Research awards included a $1 million endowment from Good Samaritan, Inc. for research on higher education issues and $450,000 from the American Telephone and Telegraph Co. to support a summer professional development institute.

By endowing 16 named professorships, the school will triple the number of named faculty chairs. The campaign has raised more money for such chairs in the past three years, school officials said, than were raised in the previous 70 years combined.

Money from the campaign will enable the school, for example, to endow its first professorship in gender studies, to be named for Harvard University’s first and only woman dean, Patricia Albjerg Graham. Ms. Graham served as the education school’s dean from 1982 until 1991.

‘Shining Example’

The campaign will also endow the first professorship in Harvard history to be named for an African-American woman, Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, a sociologist at the school of education. The chair will be a general position, with no restrictions on the specialty of the scholar who holds it.

The school plans to create what it says is the nation’s first chair at an education school dedicated to the arts in education.

The graduate school’s campaign, which attracted donations from 6,650 individuals and 80 institutions, began in 1994 as part of Harvard University’s five-year capital campaign.

The school’s only previous fund-raising campaign raised $6 million to pay for construction of Larsen Hall, a classroom building on the Cambridge, Mass., campus dedicated in 1965.

Fund-raising efforts among education schools are not limited to Harvard.

Teachers College, Columbia University, launched a five-year, $140 million campaign last fall to raise money for student financial aid, renovation of buildings, faculty development, and other improvements. The 5,170-student school in New York City has already raised $77 million, according to Barry Rosen, the executive director for external affairs.

The success at both schools came as no surprise to Trish Jackson, the vice president for education at the Washington-based Council for Advancement and Support of Education. Schools of education are benefiting from the strong economy and sustained attention to education issues, she said, calling Harvard’s success a “shining example” of good times.

“It is very impressive, and certainly more so for education schools,’' she said, “which in the past have not had the magnitude of campaigns like medical or dental schools.”

Harvard’s graduate school of education, founded in 1920, has 1,051 students this year and offers programs leading to doctorates, master’s degrees, and certificates of advanced study. Nondegree programs are also offered.

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A version of this article appeared in the February 23, 2000 edition of Education Week as Ed. School Fund Drive Tops Goal


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