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  June 12, 2000

Foundation Proffers Challenge to Business School

The School of Business has been awarded a $750,000 challenge grant by the prestigious Kresge Foundation, one of the largest private foundations in the United States. The award will help fund construction of the new School of Business building and provide fresh impetus to broaden the school's base of donor constituents during a comprehensive capital campaign.

To receive the award the school must raise the $4.5 million balance required for the new building and $12 million in gifts and pledges toward the school's capital campaign. Campaign priorities include: the new building, endowment support of the new learning facility and funds for endowed faculty chairs, professorships, programs and scholarships. Also, the school's fund-raising efforts must demonstrate an increase in overall alumni participation. The school must meet all these goals by July 1, 2001, to be eligible for the grant.

"Business in the 21st century will face an increasingly complex environment of rapid change," says Thomas G. Gutteridge, dean and Distinguished Professor of Management in the School of Business. "The business school must continue to seek private investment in order to provide the best learning environment for its students and support the research efforts of faculty and graduate students, who seek to create knowledge that significantly transfers to business practices."

A key factor in meeting the challenges and opportunities will be the construction of a state-of-the-art building. "The new school of business building will serve as a symbol of UConn's goal of becoming recognized as having one of America's best public business schools," says President Philip E. Austin.

The new 100,000-square-foot facility will be home to the school's five business departments: accounting; finance; management; marketing; and operations and information management, and will include full-time undergraduate, MBA and Ph.D. programs. It also will serve as the linchpin to deliver course offerings from the Storrs campus to the University's regional campuses. Among the key features in the new building will be two entrance atria, a café, a 40-seat boardroom and a courtyard. The first two levels will house classrooms, many of which will feature teleconferencing and distance learning capabilities. Faculty and administrative offices will be located on the upper floors. The building is scheduled for completion by fall 2001.

The Kresge Foundation, created by Sebastian S. Kresge in 1924, supports institutions operating in the areas of higher education, health and long-term care, arts and humanities, human services, science and the environment, and public affairs.

Mark Levine