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October 7, 2006
Contact: Molly de Ramel
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Corporation Endorses Stronger International Role for the University

The Corporation of Brown University has endorsed a proposal to increase financial aid resources available to international students, part of an emerging strategic plan to enhance the University’s role in international higher education.

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. — At its business meeting Saturday morning, Oct. 7, 2006, the Corporation of Brown University unanimously endorsed the first step in an emerging strategic plan to enhance Brown’s presence in international higher education. A resolution endorsed by the Corporation calls for increasing the financial aid resources available to prospective students from outside the United States.

“Providing additional resources for international financial aid will have an immediate impact on the University’s ability to attract talented undergraduate students from around the world, particularly from less-developed countries,” said Chancellor Stephen Robert. “The Corporation is eager to take this necessary and appropriate first step on the path to a greater international role for Brown.”

The Corporation, Brown’s governing body, devoted much of its Friday afternoon strategic discussion session to issues of international education and to presentations by three faculty members who are engaged in international research programs.

In addition to improving financial aid for international students, other possible early steps discussed at the Friday afternoon session include:

  • appointing a senior official reporting to the provost;
  • reviewing the University’s curricular offerings to ensure that they are comprehensive with regard to international studies and that promising new opportunities – in area studies or international finance, for example – will be fully explored;
  • developing advisory councils of parents, alumni and friends who have expertise in various regions of the world to help the University recruit students and establish strong working relationships with governments, universities and other organizations outside the United States;
  • expanding the University’s existing programs for faculty and student exchange, international research programs, international internships for students, and other joint international activities.

“Changes under way across the world bring new opportunities and demands to higher education and to Brown,” said President Ruth J. Simmons. “It is difficult to envision a future for Brown that does not include a larger and more effective capacity for internationally competitive programs of research and instruction.”

Topics of Discussion

The Corporation discussed a range of additional issues, including the progress of academic initiatives, the status of the comprehensive capital campaign, recent issues concerning the Department of Public Safety and the Providence Police Department, undergraduate student housing, the long-range capital budget, a variety of near-term capital projects, investment strategies, the progress of a social choice option for donors, the University’s risk profile, and many others.

Life Sciences

Members of the Corporation joined President Simmons, faculty, alumni, students and University guests Friday evening for the formal dedication of the Sidney E. Frank Hall for Life Sciences. Construction of the five-story, 169,000-square-foot glass and brick structure on Meeting Street, across from the Pembroke Campus was the University’s largest capital project.

“In name, scale and purpose,” President Simmons said, “the Sidney E. Frank Hall for Life Sciences is a fitting memorial to Mr. Frank’s energy and creativity and a welcome addition to our campus.”

During the dedication ceremony, members of the Frank family announced a further gift of $3 million from the Sidney E. Frank Foundation to create endowed graduate fellowships in the Division of Biology and Medicine.

“Even against the backdrop of this magnificent new research and teaching facility and the excitement of its formal dedication, the significance of these endowed graduate fellowships comes through loud and clear,” said Eli Y. Adashi, dean of medicine and biological sciences. “Brown’s capacity for graduate student support is keeping pace with the University’s growing investment in life science research.”

Other Business

The Corporation formally accepted a $15-million gift from the C.V. Starr Foundation to provide endowment funds for the University’s Commerce, Organizations and Entrepreneurship program. The gift will endow one professorship in each of three participating academic departments (economics, engineering and sociology) and will establish a $3-million flexible program fund.

University policy and practice requires that all major gifts, including all gifts of $1 million or more, be presented directly to the Corporation for formal acceptance. In addition to the gifts from the Sidney E. Frank Foundation and the C.V. Starr Foundation, the Corporation accepted or ratified earlier acceptance by the Advisory and Executive Committee of the following gifts in support of the University’s Plan for Academic Enrichment:

  • From the estate of Mary Ann Lippitt, a bequest of $8.5 million to fund two professorships in Brown Medical School and provide $2.5 million for the women’s athletic endowment;
  • From a Brown parent of the Class of 2009, a gift of $5 million for the Creative Arts Building;
  • From Brown parents of the Classes of 2001 and 2007, a gift of $4 million for an endowed chair in international relations;
  • From Brown parents of the Classes of 2004 and 2007, a gift of $3 million for an endowed professorship in economics;
  • From a 1977 Brown graduate and Class of 2008 parent, a gift of $1.9 million – $1.5 million for the Brown Annual Fund and $400,000 for current-use undergraduate scholarships;
  • From the estate of Maury A. Bromsen, a bequest of $1.85 million to endow the curatorship of Latin Americana at the John Carter Brown Library;
  • From Martin Granoff, a former trustee, honorary degree recipient and parent of the Class of 1993, a gift of $1,042,500 for the Creative Arts Building;
  • From Mr. and Mrs. Robert M. Bass, a gift of $1,017,563 for the University’s general endowment in honor of President Simmons;
  • From the family foundation of an alumna, a gift of $5million – $2 million for the Creative Arts Building, $1.4 million for endowment of the Department of Visual Art, $1million to endow the Creative Arts Council Student Grant Program, and $600,000 for endowment of the Department of Theatre, Speech and Dance;
  • On behalf of the late Eleanor H. Schwartz, a member of the Pembroke College Class of 1929, and the late Frederic N. Schwartz, $26.5 million in support of scholarships for women.

Upon the recommendation of its Budget and Finance Committee, the Corporation voted:

  • to authorize the administration to establish a $50-million tax-exempt commercial paper program. Approximately $23 million of that amount will be used to refinance taxable debt used to acquire and finance the fit-out of the future home of Brown’s Program in Public Health at 121 South Main St.;
  • to proceed with architect selection for the Creative Arts Building and renovations to Rhode Island Hall to accommodate the Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World.