Donor gives $100m to ed­u­ca­tion

Sunday Star-Times - - BUSINESS | OPINION & NEWS -

An Amer­i­can busi­ness­man and phi­lan­thropist is do­nat­ing US$100 mil­lion (US$142.4m) to the Na­tional Univer­sity Sys­tem, a non­profit that fo­cuses on ed­u­ca­tion and phi­lan­thropy ini­tia­tives.

T Denny San­ford of South Dakota is best known for do­nat­ing about US$1 bil­lion to the Dako­tas-based health sys­tem that car­ries his name.

The new do­na­tion is the largest in the Na­tional Univer­sity Sys­tem’s his­tory, and comes a year af­ter San­ford gave US$28m to the net­work, which sup­ports stu­dents look­ing for al­ter­na­tive ways to learn.

The gift will ex­pand the sys­tem’s San­ford Har­mony pro­gramme, which aims to help re­duce stereo­typ­ing, bul­ly­ing and ag­gres­sion in young school­child­ren.

Sys­tem of­fi­cials say the San­ford Har­mony pro­gramme could reach up to 30 mil­lion stu­dents na­tion­wide and around the world.

It em­pha­sises diver­sity, in­clu­sion, em­pa­thy, crit­i­cal think­ing, com­mu­ni­ca­tion, prob­lem-solv­ing and peer re­la­tion­ships. The ob­jec­tive, San­ford said, is for stu­dents to carry those qual­i­ties through life and to ul­ti­mately re­duce the di­vorce rate.

‘‘It re­ally cre­ates har­mony among the kids,’’ he said. ‘‘But as I said, the long-term goal is har­mony among adults. Pre­ven­ta­tive medicine is the pur­pose of the whole pro­gramme.’’

AP

T Denny San­ford’s do­na­tion will help school­child­ren world­wide.

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