The Hall Family Foundation of Kansas City, Mo., announced today that it will donate $42 million to Kansas University over the next five years.
The donation the largest ever to a university in Kansas includes money for the KU Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan., the Edwards Campus in Overland Park and the main campus in Lawrence. It was announced during a ceremony at the KU Medical Center.
"We hope that this $42 million grant will serve as a source of inspiration -- not only to the future students and teachers of KU -- but to lawmakers and private donors as well," Donald J. Hall, Hall Family Foundation chair, said in prepared remarks.
"If the knowledge-based needs of the future are to be met, the importance of higher education in our area must be a view that is shared by all," Hall said. "We believe that the KU grant will broaden the range of intellectual capital within our community and will make our region a more diverse, more forward-looking and more compelling place to live and work."
In his prepared remarks, KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway called the donation, "a tremendous gift for Kansas and the Kansas City region."
"This gift will have a major impact on our ability to serve our students and the state of Kansas. It is an enthusiastic response to the university's plan to become one of the top 25 public universities in the United States."
Here is a breakdown of where the money will go:
$29.5 million toward life sciences, including $27 million toward a new research building at the KU Medical Center; $1.5 million for "bridging grants," which help researchers prepare applications for outside grants; and $1 million for two life sciences professorships.
$7 million to the Hall Center for the Humanities, including $3 million to remodel its building or construct a new one; $1 million to help match a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities; $2.5 million for professorships; and $500,000 to supplement an existing Hall humanities professorship.
$5 million to construct a new building at the Edwards Campus in Overland Park.
$500,000 to establish a professorship in the School of Business honoring Maurice Joy, who was the Joyce C. Hall Distinguished Professor from 1981 to 2000.
The Hall Family Foundation, started in 1943 by Hallmark Cards founder Joyce C. Hall, has given more than $7 million to the university since 1943.
The foundation's announcement comes three months before the public kick-off for the KU Endowment Association's "KU First: Investing in Excellence" campaign, which aims to raise $500 million for the university.
Hemenway said the $29.5 million Life Sciences gift will "revolutionize research at the KU Medical Center." He also said it would be "a major step toward making Kansas City a national hub for the life sciences."
In his prepared remarks, Forrest Hoglund, chairman of KU's fund-raising campaign, thanked the Hall Family Foundation for its foresight in making its gift.
Hoglund said that, like all private gifts for KU, the foundation's commitment is not intended to replace funding from the state of Kansas.