Keck Graduate Institute Meets $30 Mil Keck Challenge Grant a Year Ahead of Schedule

Oct 12, 2010, 08:00 ET from Keck Graduate Institute

CLAREMONT, Calif., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Keck Graduate Institute (KGI) has succeeded in raising a match of $30 million in six years – a full year ahead of schedule – solidifying its position as a pioneer in bioscience business education.

A generous $20 million grant awarded by the W. M. Keck Foundation in 2004 challenged KGI to raise $30 million in seven years to garner a total of $50 million in private support. The $20 million Matching Challenge Grant was the foundation's second-largest gift to KGI, following a $50 million grant to establish the institute in 1997. It served as a catalyst for growth, contributing to fiscal stability and doubling student enrollment.

"The challenge grant was a transforming gift," says KGI President Sheldon M. Schuster, PhD. "It was investment money that allowed us to grow, build our brand and serve as a model for others."

In reaching this milestone, KGI was able to leverage gifts from an expanding network of donors, raising the institute's profile as a locus of innovation in the life sciences industry.

This fall marked the largest total enrollment in KGI history. Net tuition revenue has increased five-fold since the challenge began in 2004.

Over the challenge period, KGI's Advisory Council grew to 45 active members, while its board now counts 26 trustees. The institute also increased its total number of donors by 36% and doubled corporate sponsorships of its Team Masters Projects.  

KGI's program is unparalleled in requiring an industry internship and Team Masters Project, where small groups of students work with sponsoring companies to solve real world problems. Additionally, KGI created the Postdoctoral Professional Masters degree, a one-year program to educate scientists and engineers to become leaders of the bioscience industry.

"The fact that we succeeded in raising this money a year early is a remarkable testimony to the importance of KGI," says Robert Curry, chairman of the KGI Board of Trustees. "In these economic times, people don't give money unless they think it is an important cause and they believe in it."

Curry added that the impact of the challenge grant was "much greater than dollars—it forced us to really get out there and make our story known."

Approximately $14 million of the $30 million that KGI raised will go towards its endowment fund to support the institute's long term financial sustainability.

The $30 million raised by KGI during the challenge grant period supported the institute in critical ways by providing:

  • $7.6 million for student support, including eight new endowed fellowships that strengthened  the Master of Bioscience (MBS) degree to make it the national standard by which nearly 200 other Professional Science Masters degrees are measured;  
  • $6.9 million for faculty support, doubling the number of endowed professorships to seven, and exceeding the number available at much larger universities;
  • $6 million supporting KGI programming and projects, including seed funding for the Center for Rare Disease Therapies and the Center for Biomarker Research;
  • $3.7 million for facilities, such as state-of-the-art classrooms and research laboratories;
  • $5.9 million for unrestricted uses.

W. M. Keck Foundation Background

The W. M. Keck Foundation was founded in 1954 as a charitable trust by William Myron Keck, the founder of Superior Oil Company. Mr. Keck envisioned a philanthropic organization that would provide far-reaching benefits for humanity in the fields of science, engineering, natural resources, medicine and higher education.

KGI Background

Educating the future leaders of the bioscience industry, Keck Graduate Institute (KGI) offers an interdisciplinary graduate education through its Master of Bioscience (MBS), Postdoctoral Professional Masters (PPM), Postbaccalaureate Premedical Certificate (PPC), PhD and other academic programs. Using team-based learning and real-world projects, KGI's innovative curriculum seamlessly combines applied life sciences, bioengineering, bioethics and business management. KGI also has a robust research program concentrating on the translation of basic discoveries in the life sciences into applications that can benefit society. KGI is a member of The Claremont Colleges, located in Claremont, California.

Keck Graduate Institute of Applied Life Sciences is dedicated to education and research aimed at translating into practice, for the benefit of society, the power and potential of the life sciences.

SOURCE Keck Graduate Institute