Dear Commons Community,
Harvard University is announcing the largest gift in its history, $350 million to the School of Public Health, from a group controlled by a wealthy Hong Kong family, one member of which earned graduate degrees at the university.
Drew Gilpin Faust, Harvard’s president, said the gift by the Morningside Foundation, directed to a relatively small part of the university, would have a profound effect on the School of Public Health in Boston, giving it a stable financial base and the ability to give students more financial aid while expanding programs in several fields.
“It’s always been, as the whole field always is, under-resourced,” Dr. Faust said. “It’s overwhelmingly dependent on money from federal grants that are under threat.”
The foundation is led by two brothers, Ronnie and Gerald Chan, whose businesses include the Hang Lung Group, a major developer of real estate in Hong Kong and elsewhere in China, and the Morningside Group, a private equity and venture capital firm. The School of Public Health will be renamed for their father, T. H. Chan, who founded Hang Lung.