September 27, 2007
Clinton Global Initiative
Brown, Princeton to Enhance Partnership with Dillard University
At the 2007 Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting in New York City, Brown University President Ruth J. Simmons announced that Brown and Princeton University would extend and enhance their post-Katrina partnership with Dillard University in New Orleans.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Brown University President Ruth J. Simmons announced today (Thursday, Sept. 27, 2007) that Brown and Princeton University will extend and expand their partnership with Dillard University in New Orleans. Simmons announced the extended partnership at the 2007 annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative in New York.
“The immediate outpouring of assistance from individuals and institutions of higher learning was heartening and very effective in the days and weeks after Katrina,” Simmons said. “Now, two years after the storm, we cannot ignore the imperative for sustained, effective action over the long term.”
Historically black colleges and universities were among the hardest-hit institutions in New Orleans, Dillard most of all. “According to one estimate,” Simmons said, “nearly 70 percent of students at New Orleans public and private colleges dropped out for at least a semester – a level of disruption our country had not seen since the Great Depression.” Damage to the Dillard campus was in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Many colleges, Brown included, offered a semester’s free tuition to students displaced by the storm and undertook a variety of other measures to stabilize and support the damaged colleges. Brown and Princeton formed a partnership to ensure that Dillard would have continued access to people, expertise and other resources needed to restore operations and resume academic programs. Through the generosity of alumni such as Sidney Frank, Brown was able to provide Dillard with 200 scholarships for the winter semester of that first academic year.
The partnership was able to provide and recruit a variety of resources to assist Dillard. The enhancements announced by Simmons today will allow the partnership to move beyond the rebuilding and reconstruction phase of Dillard’s recovery, focusing on advanced institutional development: physical planning, library enrichment, improvements in computing infrastructure and other IT areas, enhancements to academic offerings and enrichment of campus life.
Brown and Princeton will identify persons on their staffs who have expertise in those areas and will cover the costs of making their expertise available to Dillard. They will operate under the guidance of Dillard’s president. The universities may also donate equipment, academic resources, additional consulting and other materials and services that will help Dillard to thrive and build academic programs.
Simmons intends the enhanced partnership to challenge further support from other institutions in hopes of assisting other historically black colleges and universities, tribal colleges, and other institutions of higher learning whose programs and student bodies need and deserve support.
Editors: Brown University has a fiber link television studio available for domestic and international live and taped interviews and maintains an ISDN line for radio interviews. For more information, call the Office of Media Relations at (401) 863-2476.
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