Last Updated on October 18, 2023 by Robert C. Hoopes
Title: Elite US Colleges Face Backlash from Wealthy Donors Over Israel-Hamas Conflict
In the midst of the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict, elite US colleges are coming under fire from wealthy donors who express their dissatisfaction with these institutions’ responses. As tensions continue to escalate, some donors are even closing their checkbooks as a form of protest.
The conflict, which has tragically resulted in thousands of civilian casualties and injuries, has become a point of contention between college campuses and their financial supporters. Marc Rowan, CEO of Apollo Global Management, has taken a bold step by calling for the resignation of the University of Pennsylvania’s president and chairman of the board of trustees.
The Huntsman family, led by former US ambassador Jon Huntsman Jr., has decided to halt further donations to Penn due to the university’s perceived silence on the conflict. This decision indicates a growing frustration among donors who expected a stronger stance from these esteemed institutions.
Computer scientist David Magerman, another significant donor, is also planning to cease all donations to Penn. The pressure further mounts as Estée Lauder heir Ronald Lauder threatens to follow suit, potentially causing a significant financial blow to the university.
Harvard University has not been spared from the backlash either. The esteemed institution has lost its partnership with the Wexner Foundation due to its failure to condemn attacks on Israeli civilians. Wealthy alumni criticize Harvard’s perceived weak stances on antisemitism as well.
Notably, billionaire investor Bill Ackman has called on Harvard to publish the names of students who signed a letter blaming Israel for the war. The demand reflects an increasing demand for transparency and accountability within these universities.
Meanwhile, Idan Ofer and his wife have stepped down from the board of the Kennedy School of Government due to what they perceive as a lack of support from the university’s leadership. This decision only adds to the growing tension between wealthy donors and these prestigious institutions.
As the conflict between Israel and Hamas rages on, elite US colleges find themselves at odds with their influential donors. With wealthy supporters expressing their dissatisfaction and even withdrawing financial support, these universities face an uphill battle in maintaining their relationships and addressing concerns about their stance on the conflict and antisemitism.
Note: Wordcount without the title: 397 words.