IU Board Approves School Of Philanthropy

June 22, 2012       Paul Clolery      

The Board of Trustees of Indiana University has approved a plan to establish the nation’s first School of Philanthropy. The degree will carry the same weight as a degree from one of the university’s other schools, such as liberal arts.

The School of Philanthropy will combine under one umbrella academic and research on the philanthropic sector. The research arm will continue to be the Center on Philanthropy (CoP), which was established in 1987 and has been the university’s hub for philanthropic studies.

Led by the center, IU was the first university in the world to offer degrees in philanthropic studies, including a Master of Arts in 1993, a Ph.D. in 2003 and a Bachelor of Arts in 2010. The notion of a School of Philanthropy at IU has been discussed for roughly a decade. If all goes to plan, the school should open during the summer of 2013.

The Center on Philanthropy will continue to spearhead research as well as training and service programs, including The Fund Raising School, the Lake Institute on Faith & Giving and the Women’s Philanthropy Institute.

As reported earlier this week by The NonProfit Times, Eugene Tempel, Ph.D., is returning to the CoP as a senior fellow to play a major role in establishing the school. Tempel served as CoP’s executive director for 11 years and was one of its founders before becoming president of the Indiana University Foundation in 2008. The CoP is now headed by Patrick Rooney, Ph.D.

Indiana University board’s Academic Affairs Committee approved the plan and passed it to the full board. The board approved and asked for a review or progress report within two years. The next step is for the plan to be presented to the Indiana Commission on Higher Education, which meets five more times this year. The next meeting is Aug. 10 and runs monthly through the end of the year.

“The new School of Philanthropy at IU will draw, to an even greater degree, from the expertise that exists across a number of schools at the university, providing a robust, interdisciplinary approach to fields of study that have become increasingly complex,” said Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie, who also chairs the IU Foundation board. “The university is fortunate to have a recognized thought leader in philanthropic studies in Gene Tempel to lead our work as we make this important transition.”

“Philanthropy’s role and impact in the business and government sectors and around the globe, as well as in the nonprofit sector, are increasing dramatically,” said Rooney. “The proposed School of Philanthropy would prepare current and aspiring philanthropy and nonprofit professionals with the knowledge to be thoughtful, sophisticated and innovative leaders and would educate new generations of scholars in a field whose importance is growing rapidly in all aspects of society.”

Rooney said that pending approval of the Indiana Commission on Higher Education, task forces will be established to help design the new school’s structure. Tempel stressed that the CoP brand is very strong and will be a central part of the school.

The school will be housed in Indianapolis, where the CoP resides. It is on a hybrid campus shared with Purdue University and known as IUPUI. While the schools share real estate, they do not share academic programs. The School of Philanthropy will solely be an IU program.

A dean for the school has not been selected, Tempel and Rooney said. Each IU campus has a chancellor who reports to the university’s president. The deans at each campus report to the chancellor, they explained.

As with any academic setting, funding is an issue. According to Tempel, the school has raised roughly $68 million for an endowment with a projected need of $100 million. Tempel is a seasoned and successful fundraiser.

“Under Gene’s leadership, the university has increased its donor base and secured large, transformative gifts for a number of schools, departments and centers across the university,” said McRobbie.

The IU Foundation also completed IU-Bloomington’s $1.1 billion Matching the Promise campaign and exceeded this target by more than $40 million; launched the $1.25 billion IMPACT campaign at IUPUI, which is close to successful completion; and initiated fundraising campaigns on three of IU’s regional campuses. In addition, the foundation launched the first Women’s Philanthropy Council for Indiana University.

Among the gifts to the university during Tempel’s time as foundation president were $60 million from Lilly Endowment to support medical research; $35 million from entrepreneur Michael S. “Mickey” Maurer for the IU Maurer School of Law in Bloomington; $24 million from attorney and businessman Robert H. McKinney for the IU McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis; and $15 million from Bloomington-based Cook Group for construction of IU’s state-of-the-art basketball training center, Cook Hall, in Bloomington.

Rooney said the CoP has five endowed chairs, verbal commitments for two new chairs and have been asked for proposals from potential funders for additional three chairs.

The push will be to grow the number of endowed chairs and scholarships, said Rooney. Right now roughly 75 faculty members have some sort of connection to the CoP. There are approximately 10 full-time equivalent positions and Rooney hopes to grow that to 20.

With the nonprofit sector roughly 5 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product and 10 percent of the workforce, such as school could be a profit-center for the university, Rooney said.