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Claremont Webb Schools receives historic donation

Last Saturday, Claremont’s Webb Schools announced the private institution received a “historic estate gift of at least $100 million” according to the school’s news release. The donation comes from an anonymous male donor — said to be an alumnus of the school — and is “the largest ever made to an independent high school west of the Mississippi,” according to the press release.

“The donation will dramatically expand Webb’s innovative education programs, strengthen its team of expert educators and significantly boost student aid,” it continued.

“This transformative gift at least $100 million will enable Webb to dramatically expand access to our unique, unbounded program to the very best and deserving students regardless of financial circumstance,” said Head of Schools Taylor B. Stockdale in the news release. “It is the single greatest act of philanthropy in Webb’s history.”

The anonymous donor gave the generous offering to honor his parents for their wisdom and sacrifices in sending him to Webb, and as a recognition for Webb’s indelible impact on his life.

“When great teachers share experiences and exchange ideas, the invaluable art of teaching becomes electric. This energy attracts the best and most imaginative students eager to be challenged, both by their teachers and by each other,” the donor said. “In turn, these students go on to become inspired graduates coveted by the world’s best colleges and universities. And, more importantly, students get exposed to enough of what the world has to offer that they are able to find the place – be it a niche or an arena – where they can make their mark. Webb then truly becomes a place where the opportunities are boundless.”

The donation was for and came on the day the Webb Schools of California (WSC) officially kicked off their Next 100 campaign to the public — it is also known as Webb’s Centennial Campaign. The campaign aims to raise at least $200 million by 2025 so the school can open up more to the world, foster academic innovation on campus and transform the campus down the line. For more information on the campaign, visit www.webb100.org.

While WSC’s Next 100 has received over $170 million already, the $100 million dollar donation will serve three specific purposes. According to the news release, that money will,

  • Leverage the schools’ location by creating new partnerships enabling Webb students to be actively involved with the many educational, cultural and service institutions in the greater Los Angeles area,
  • Attract, nurture and retain exceptional, life-changing teachers, and
  • Ensure that a curious, high-energy, kind and hard-working student body is enrolled regardless of financial circumstance.

“I am astounded by the donor’s generosity and excited by this gift’s promise to transform the lives of Webb students and teachers,” Jim Dahler, a 34-year veteran Webb School teacher, said.

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