Pennoni Panels: Show Me the Money: The Ethics of Philanthropy

Join the Pennoni Honors College tomorrow, May 20th from 3:30PM-5:00PM EDT via Zoom!

In recent years, universities have had to reckon with questions as to who is funding their programs and how donors reinforce or challenge institutional values. Controversies surrounding donations made by Bill Cosby, Jeffrey Epstein, the Koch Brothers, and the Sackler family have caused institutions across the United States to reflect, make public statements, and attempt to redress wrongs and reestablish trust. But universities also continue to struggle with falling enrollment rates and statewide budget cuts that make relying on private donations a necessity. Is it possible for universities to divest from private, and potentially problematic, donors? How do we offer further financial support to departments and students without privatized sponsorship? What should institutions do when confronted with such controversies? This panel will address the ethical quandaries associated with private donorship and the state of the university.


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