Dartmouth College on its website today announced an anonymous gift of $100 million, the largest single outright donation in the college's 244-year history, which also includes a 2-to-1 challenge to double the investment's size to $200 million.
President Philip J. Hanlon said, "I am deeply honored and grateful for this extraordinary act of generosity. This historic gift is an exceptional vote of confidence as we embark on an exciting journey to ensure Dartmouth remains the preeminent undergraduate institution in the nation; a magnet for human talent; and a college that cultivates a culture of ideas, discovery, and solutions to problems that will make the world a better place."
Coming in the first year of Hanlon's presidency, the investment arrives at a pivotal moment in Dartmouth's history, according to trustee chairman Steve Mandel. "It marks the start of a remarkable era propelled by President Hanlon's vision for Dartmouth, a vision that has as its foundation the unparalleled academic excellence of a most distinct liberal arts college."
This first step to secure the future of Dartmouth's academic enterprise will be put to use in support of President Hanlon's recently announced Cluster Initiative and will create approximately 30 to 40 endowed faculty positions over the next decade through this measure alone. To date, 29 cluster proposals — involving as many as eight faculty members each and more than 100 faculty in total — have been submitted to the Office of the Provost.
Half of each new gift will be matched by today's commitment, with the $50 million eventually bringing in matching funds of another $100 million over the course of the challenge, which runs through Dec. 31, 2015. The combined result will provide $200 million in support of this first piece of Hanlon's vision.
"Dartmouth faculty and alumni have played a leadership role in global issues throughout the college's history," said Bob Lasher, senior vice president for advancement. "This momentous gift inspires us to do more and come together as a community to make a difference in the world. I have no doubt that other donors will show support for the ambition President Hanlon has brought to Dartmouth."