Ivey receives $1.3 million gift towards fundraising campaign

The Richard Ivey School of Business at The University of Western Ontario received a significant boost to its fundraising campaign today with a $1.3 million donation.

Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life contributed $300,000, and Power Financial Corporation (a diversified management and holding company) contributed $1 million, to the school’s fundraising campaign.

“This generous gift to the University builds on previous gifts, including donations to support leading business and health research, as well as scholarships to support student education,” says Western’s president Amit Chakma. “It’s tremendous to have this level of commitment to the University. It truly makes a difference in the lives of students, faculty and staff.”

Great-West Life, together with subsidiaries London Life and Canada Life, was awarded the Purple and White award, the university’s top alumni and friends award in 2005. It was the first time the award had been bestowed on a corporation, foundation or association.

“We enjoy an excellent relationship with Ivey which has continued over many years,” says Allen Loney, President and Chief Executive Officer of Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life. “Our support has ranged from major scholarships and fellowships to such innovations as Ivey Connects and Community Internships, the Business Families Centre and the Network for Business Sustainability.”

“We look for opportunities to build Stronger Communities Together™. Ivey’s broadly-based and responsive programs are an important strategic approach. It’s an approach that we are proud to support as an Imagine Caring Company, through our national corporate citizenship program, and as business leaders.”

With plans to bring in a total investment of $200 million, including government funding, Ivey has already secured contributions totalling $153.9 million.

One of the cornerstones of Ivey’s $200 million campaign is the new Ivey building which has received support from private donors, the University, and the Provincial and Federal governments. Funding for this project is being provided by the Government of Canada’s Knowledge Infrastructure Program and through the Ontario Government’s 2009 Budget as part of efforts to help modernize facilities and boost long-term research and skills training capacity at provincial colleges and universities.

Today’s generous donation brings the funding to $94.2 million of the required $100 million for the new Ivey building. In recognition of the gift, one of Ivey’s distinctive, tiered, case classrooms on the main floor of the school will carry the Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life name and a nearby student lounge will carry the London Life name.

Designed for active conversation and debate rather than traditional lecturing, case classrooms are the foundation of Ivey’s educational model. It is the school’s distinctive case method style of teaching and dynamic classroom environment that contributes to the “Ivey experience.” In addition to classes, the classroom will host a variety of guest speakers, including alumni and business leaders, whose vision and knowledge will inspire our next generation of business leaders. In the student lounge, students will be able to collaborate with faculty, work together on projects and socialize with peers.

“We are deeply appreciative of the ongoing support from Great-West Life, London Life and Canada Life,” says Carol Stephenson, dean of Ivey. “Collaboration is one of the key elements in the design of the new building and this gift will help build a shared atmosphere bringing together graduate and undergraduate students as well as faculty and staff. The London Life Lounge will be an important informal meeting place on the busy main floor.”