CORVALLIS, Ore. – A $1 million gift to support an international exchange program in Oregon State University’s College of Business has brought the university’s first comprehensive fundraising campaign past the $550 million milestone on its way to its $625 million goal.
“To see this kind of steadfast dedication from the university’s friends and alumni is incredibly heartwarming – and that’s all the more true at this time of year,” said OSU President Ed Ray. “These gifts are an investment in OSU’s future. They are having an amazing impact on our students and faculty and on their work to benefit the state of Oregon and our world.”
The $1 million gift will provide scholarships for the Arthur Stonehill International Business Exchange Program and support curriculum development on international topics in the College of Business. The exchange program was founded in 1987 by Stonehill, a former finance department chair who taught finance and international business at OSU for more than 20 years.
Donor Joe Lobbato, one of Stonehill’s former students, earned his undergraduate and MBA degrees from OSU in 1981 and 1982. He was a founding partner of Accenture and currently resides in Thailand.
The Arthur Stonehill International Business Exchange Program is the largest program of its kind in the state. Through the exchange, each year approximately 60 OSU College of Business students enroll in programs in Austria, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Norway, Singapore, Sweden and Thailand.
Professor emeritus Stonehill noted that more than a thousand students have taken part in the exchange. “When they come back,” he said, “they all say the same thing: that it’s been a life-changing experience.”
He cites the example of Avelino Solomon, a 2009 business graduate from Albany, Ore., who spent five months in Thailand. In a report afterward Solomon wrote, “I’ve been positively affected in such a way that I can’t describe it. This journey has made me even more capable of affecting positive change in our world, and I’m forever grateful.”
To date more than 50,000 households have contributed to The Campaign for OSU, benefiting students, faculty and outreach programs. Gifts to the campaign have created more than 350 new scholarship funds, established 28 endowed faculty positions and constructed new facilities for research and learning.