Saturday, April 25, 2009

Anonymous donations to US universities

The contributions -- nearly 70 million dollars! -- have several things in common: (a) the beneficiary universities are headed by women, (b) the bulk of the contributions is meant for scholarships for women and minorities, and (c) all except one are public universities.


The call typically comes from a banker, bringing word of a fairy godmother. This is followed quickly by a check arriving in the mail — or two checks, the larger earmarked for scholarships for women and minority students, the smaller to be spent at the recipient’s discretion.

The only catch, for at least a dozen colleges and universities that have benefited from the surprise largess over the past two months, is that the donor must remain anonymous. ...