May 14, 2020 | Matt Kucinski

A rendering of a new business school building
Rendering of the School of Business building, courtesy of GMB Architecture & Engineering

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Less than a year after changing its name, Calvin University is adding its first school. University leaders hope the new school is the first of many. A $22.25 million anonymous gift to launch the Calvin University School of Business was announced during the institution’s board of trustees meeting this past weekend.

“We are so very thankful to God and to the donors who made this gift possible. Our donors love the mission and were compelled by the vision of Calvin University and our desire to serve current and future students,” said Michael Le Roy, president of Calvin University.

The gift will be used to construct the Calvin University School of Business building and to improve shared spaces in the DeVos Communication Center, the building to which the new school will be connected. The gift also provides significant endowment funds that will be used to support the new dean of the School of Business and business faculty. The purpose of the endowment is to serve as a catalyst for a number of new academic programs intended to serve new populations of students at Calvin.

"This generous gift allows the university to extend its influence as a center of Reformed Christian thought leadership in business by addressing the needs of a wider range of learners, from undergraduate and graduate students to practicing businesspeople and thought leaders,” said Marilyn Stansbury, director of Calvin's master of accounting program.

“Future generations will benefit from this inspiring gift as the Calvin University School of Business grows to reach and equip new types of learners in new ways that provide bold, transformative educational experiences grounded in our Reformed Christian faith,” said Bob Eames, director of the Calvin Center for Innovation in Business.

Le Roy says this gift provides significant donor leadership for the university’s aspirations to name other schools at Calvin. “It makes an important statement about our donors’ belief in the university’s bold purpose even in the midst of global uncertainty.”

“We are delighted and honored to be a part of this effort and believe that Calvin will get significant gifts from others to create a truly great school of business that will demonstrate that business skills are gifts from God and are used to help bring His Kingdom,” wrote the anonymous donor.

Calvin’s business program is well-respected, the Fiske Guide to Colleges has Calvin on its shortlist of 39 small colleges and universities strong in business. And the program’s reputation is animated by the way its grads embody the university’s mission.

“The purpose of business is to serve by providing goods and services, meeting human needs, and promoting human flourishing,” said Le Roy. “Our goal, and the donor’s intent, is to advance business knowledge and skills on a Christian liberal arts foundation characteristic of Calvin’s mission.”

University leaders see initiatives like these continuing to extend that mission and advance the university’s Vision 2030. Construction on the new building is expected to begin in spring 2021, with the anticipated completion date of fall 2022.

For more information, contact Matt Kucinski at msk23@calvin.edu or 616-307-7429.

About Calvin University

Founded in 1876, Calvin University is a top-ranked, liberal arts university that equips its nearly 3,600 students from 45 U.S. states, 63 countries and seven Canadian provinces to think deeply, to act justly, and to live wholeheartedly as Christ’s agents of renewal in the world. Calvin offers 100+ majors and programs, including graduate-level offerings in accounting, education, and speech pathology and audiology. Calvin students engage in intensive internships, community-based service learning, and significant research that results in publishing and presenting alongside world-class faculty.

And the university’s 400-acre campus, located in the vibrant city of Grand Rapids, Michigan, serves as a launching pad for students who, in any given year, participate in 40 faculty-led off-campus programs on six different continents. Discover more at www.calvin.edu.

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