Maria Di Mento and Anne W. Howard wrote about the Robert Day gift, The Chronicle of Philanthropy in an October 18, 2007 article. The logic for the gift and the financial program is explained by President Gann.
Apparently, we are one of only two colleges -- the other is M.I.T.-- that have received individual gifts of over 100 million dollars.
* Robert Day, a California financier, is giving $200-million to his alma mater, Claremont McKenna College, a liberal-arts institution in Claremont, Calif., to pay for a new master's-degree program for economics and finance. Mr. Day helped the college design the program. In addition, the college plans to upgrade undergraduate programs in those fields and finance new scholarships.
Mr. Day's gift to Claremont McKenna will be used to create an alternative to the traditional master of business administration program, said the college's president, Pamela Gann. She said that fewer young adults want to return to college for their master's degree after entering the work force, in part because their salaries are increasing at a rapid pace and also because many of them don't want to disrupt their finances or their personal lives.
She says the college hopes to deal with that trend by giving liberal-arts undergraduates a broader understanding of finance and organizational psychology, and offering them the opportunity to get M.B.A.-level training in a master's-degree program.
Mr. Day said he thinks a liberal-arts education is crucial to the making of a competent leader. "It broadens your perspective," he says. But those same leaders, he says, also need a certain level of competency in finance, accounting literacy, and leadership psychology, and he has worked closely with the college to design a program that will include those subjects.
"This is not to turn the college into a trade school; it's to emphasize leadership," Mr. Day says, adding that today's students get a strong enough education that they don't necessarily need an M.B.A. to succeed.
Mr. Day graduated from the college in 1965 and has served on its Board of Trustees since 1970