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Letters to the University Community $7 Million Gift Paves Way (Faculty & Staff)

April 2, 2009

During this period of economic hardship, we realize that even greater financial demands are being made on our students and their families. That’s why I’m so pleased to announce an extraordinary new program that will, when fully maximized, allow us to offer as many as 200 new merit- and need-based scholarships for outstanding freshmen each year.

Thanks to an exceedingly generous $7 million gift from a donor who wishes to remain anonymous, we are now creating the UH TierOne Scholarship Fund. I am using this gift to issue a challenge in which new scholarship contributions (of $25,000 or more) will be matched dollar-for-dollar by funds from this remarkable initial gift. If we are able to meet these matching goals – and I’m confident we can do this! - we will create a powerful $14 million scholarship endowment. The money that such an endowment will produce will provide much-needed financial support, year after year, for an even greater number of top-flight freshmen who have decided that their academic talents and UH’s premier educational resources are a perfect match.

As you know, we have been working diligently to elevate this institution to national Tier One status and one vital factor - along with increased research funding, faculty accomplishment, annual giving and degrees awarded - is the academic excellence of an institution’s freshmen class.  We believe our new UH TierOne Scholarship Fund will play a vital role in helping us address that specific requirement while supporting our overall commitment to student success. It will also allow us to maintain and even improve the robust and diverse nature of our overall enrollment at this university.

These scholarships, which are intended to cover or exceed the cost of a UH TierOne Scholar’s tuition for four years, will be available starting in the fall of 2010, but I wanted to share this good news for all of us as quickly as possible. We can now take another major step forward in our continuing efforts to raise this university to national Tier One status.

Warm regards,
Renu Khator
President, University of Houston