in Greenville, South Carolina, has announced a $25 million gift from the to launch the , a new effort to transform the student experience by combining a traditional liberal arts education with immersive experiences outside the classroom.
Launched with a total of $47 million from the endowment, the effort will provide Furman students with engaged learning experiences that help prepare them for a successful career and a life of purpose. Among other things, the funds will enable the university to increase the number and quality of the global experiences, research opportunities, internships, and community-centered projects available to students. A gift of more than $22 million from the endowment that was announced last November will fund the program, providing additional support for students with need.
Many of the opportunities to be made available through the initiative will be coordinated through the school's , , and recently established Institute for the Advancement of Community Health. The university also will create a four-year pathway designed to integrate co-curricular experiences with classroom work and help students chart a course from their interests and skills to life after college with the help of a team of advisors and an expanded network of faculty, staff, alumni, and members of the Furman community.
"This is much more than community service," said Angela Halfacre, professor of political science and earth and environmental sciences and former director of the Shi Center. "We are creating a more robust and enriched model of community-centered learning, where students, faculty, and community members work side-by-side to take on problems of real importance and find solutions. Everyone will be learning together, and as we discover what works, we can put that into practice in communities across the region and around the world."