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Annenberg Foundation's $200 Million for USC and Penn's Annenberg Schools

The Annenberg Foundation announced last Thursday endowments for the Annenberg Schools at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Southern California totaling $200,000,000. One hundred million dollars will be committed to each of the two universities. Established in 1989, The Annenberg Foundation is the successor corporation to the Annenberg School for Communication founded in 1958 by the Hon. Walter H. Annenberg, H '66. These endowments augment the $120 million grants awarded to each institution in 1993.

In a jointly issued statement, Foundation president the Hon. Leonore Annenberg, H '85 and Foundation vice president Wallis Annenberg stated, "Walter Annenberg founded the schools out of a conviction that scholars and students could harness communication in service of society. Since the creation of the School at Penn in 1958 and at USC in 1971, graduates and faculty have identified ways to use communication to improve children's television programming, protect privacy from technological trespass, improve the quality of political discourse and news, establish standards of quality in online journalism, and minimize teen smoking, suicide, illegal drug use, and risky sexual behavior. This gift will ensure that the important work of the schools will continue into the next century and beyond."

Penn President Judith Rodin and USC President Steven B. Sample hailed the generosity and vision of the Annenberg family and the Foundation. "The Annenbergs, through their unparalleled generosity to Penn and other educational institutions, have affirmed again and again the critical role that education plays in people's life opportunities. This extraordinary gift from The Annenberg Foundation ensures that Penn's Annenberg School for Communication will enhance its capacity to create the most productive future generations of communications scholars, researchers and policy makers," said President Rodin. "As our world grows increasingly complex, and information is disseminated with breathtaking speed, the role of communications research and practice becomes ever more important. The significant efforts already underway at Penn's Annenberg School will help us better understand and effectively deal with the critical issues of the day."

President Sample said, "The Annenberg family is unrivaled in its support of education in America, with a special vision and passion for the study of communications. Their ongoing support of the USC Annenberg School for Communication ensures that our faculty and students are engaged in groundbreaking research and practice in communications and journalism and that we attain the highest standards of professionalism and ethics in those fields. This landmark gift is a strong signal of support for USC and for the city of Los Angeles, which is a world center of the communications industry and the capital city of the Pacific Rim."

At Penn, the first year's revenue from the new $100 million endowment will be used for student scholarships, faculty chairs, and refurbishing of classrooms.

At USC, the revenue will be used for new initiatives relating to civic engagement, including new faculty appointments, a program focusing on innovation and excellence in local broadcast news, and new student scholarships.

The Hon.Walter H. Annenberg was named Ambassador to the Court of St. James's in 1969 and served in Great Britain until October 30, 1974. He was president of Triangle Publications, publisher of The Philadelphia Inquirer and founded TV Guide and Seventeen magazine. His wife, the Hon. Leonore Annenberg, served as U.S. Chief of Protocol, with the rank of Ambassador, from 1981-1982. They are both emeritus trustees of the University of Pennsylvania. They are the first holders--in the history of Penn--of both the President's Medal (Almanac September 27, 1994) and honorary degrees from Penn.

Mr. Annenberg's daughter Wallis, who is a long-time trustee of USC, directs the Los Angeles office of the Annenberg Foundation.

The Annenberg Foundation "exists to advance the public well-being through improved communication." As the principal means of achieving this goal, the Foundation encourages the development of more effective ways to share ideas and knowledge.


Almanac, Vol. 49, No. 5, September 24, 2002

ISSUE HIGHLIGHTS:

Tuesday,
September 24, 2002
Volume 49 Number 5
www.upenn.edu/almanac/

The Annenbergs enhance Penn's Annenberg School for Communication with a new $100 million endowment.
A Sesquicentennial Celebration--celebrating 150 years of Engineering at Penn, this week.
LGBT Center celebrates new home and 20th anniversary on Thursday.
A White House Town Hall Meeting on Securing Cyberspace will be held on campus next Thursday.
Alumna on Jeopardy! tonight.
Speaking Out: Compensation; Safe-guarding Labs, and Arms of University.
Pottruck Health and Fitness Center--a state-of-the-art facility--gives new meaning to recreation.