$5.2 million contribution to support global studies, Living-Learning, York Road Initiative, and financial aid

By Courtney Jolley  |  Photo by Scott Suchman
Ed and Ellen Hanway

Ed and Ellen Hanway would be the first ones to tell you that they are fortunate people—blessed, even. Ed built a successful career in the insurance industry while Ellen raised their three children. Both have close ties to faith, civic, and educational organizations. Now, with their children grown and Ed in retirement, the two have an even greater opportunity to devote their energies to the interests and causes most meaningful to them.

Fortunately for Loyola, the University ranks very highly on this list.

This fall, Ed, a member of the Class of 1974 who serves as chairman of Loyola’s Board of Trustees, and Ellen Hanway made a gift of $5.2 million to Loyola—the largest outright gift from an individual in University history. The couple says they strive to concentrate their philanthropy on the organizations that matter most to them. “It’s important to have a focus,” said Ed. “We wanted to support the organizations that have made the greatest impact on us, and where our gifts would have the most impact. Loyola is a special place. We feel very good about our investment.”

The Hanways’ gift will provide critical resources for a number of key University initiatives, including its global studies program, York Road Initiative, and living-learning communities for first-year students, as well as create a new, endowed, full-tuition scholarship.

“Loyola’s strategy isn’t about buildings—it cuts right to the core of what the University is about, programs and education,” said Ed, of Media, Pa.

The global studies program, an interdisciplinary major combining economics, political science, history, and sociology, is the largest beneficiary of the Hanways’ gift. Their support fully funds the priorities established for the program, allowing for the creation of an endowed faculty chair and endowed speakers’ series, as well as the addition of resources for faculty scholarship.

“It’s becoming increasingly important for students to understand that our world is getting smaller,” said Ed. “And the interdisciplinary approach to this program, combining business and arts and sciences, is particularly distinctive.”

More than 100 Loyola students are now majoring in global studies, a remarkable feat for a program launched only five years ago.

“Student demand for this program has outstripped our expectations,” said Karyl B. Leggio, Ph.D., dean of Loyola’s Sellinger School of Business and Management. “The wonderful thing about the Hanways’ gift is it offers complete funding for our plans for the global studies program. It’s not piecemeal—we can fully implement this program.”

Loyola has long offered many ways for students to broaden their international perspectives, from foreign language requirements to diversity courses to extensive study abroad programs, but the global studies program creates an opportunity for students to take their international understanding to the next level.

“There is no escaping the global society we operate in today,” said Rev. James J. Miracky, S.J., dean of Loyola College, the University’s school of arts and sciences. “Our students’ lives will be much more affected by global currents—politically, economically, ecologically. They will be expected to have an awareness and sensitivity to the multiplicity of cultures. And of course, this program aligns so closely with Loyola’s Jesuit mission. In many ways, the Jesuits were the first global organization. Within 10 years of their founding, there were Jesuits in China, India, Latin America, and Africa, driven by the belief that God exists in all places. Today, our students recognize that they are global citizens. They have a responsibility to give back to the world, and we can’t afford for that to be a localized thing. They need to understand the international implications of their votes, their consumption, their economic choices.”

The York Road Initiative is another vivid example of a program designed to strengthen Loyola’s engagement with its community. A University-wide effort to improve the quality of life for those living, working, and learning in the neighborhoods just east of Loyola’s Evergreen campus, the initiative is focused on creating and growing programs that center on education and youth development, strengthening the commercial corridor, and building civic capacity. One of its first major initiatives came to fruition this past summer with the launch of a farmers’ market in the community, which lacks a grocery store.

“Loyola’s always had an understanding of its role in the community, and of the obligation its students, faculty, staff, and administrators have to be effective citizens,” said Ed. “The York Road Initiative is an important step forward in this regard.”

The Hanways’ gift also provides considerable funds for Loyola’s living-learning program, set to launch in the fall of 2013. While many colleges and universities—including Loyola—offer living-learning experiences in which students take one or more courses with their residence hall neighbors, Loyola’s will be unusual in extending the experience to all first-year students, and in the depth and breadth of co- and extracurricular programs it includes.

“We are creating new communities of learning that will transform the way we welcome first-year students and engage them in our Jesuit mission,” said Mike Puma, living-learning student development co-director. “The scope of the program demands meaningful time for faculty, administrators, and student leaders to come together, share ideas, and develop relationships. These funds give us the resources to nurture these new communities so that living-learning begins with a sense of cohesiveness and synergy embedded in all layers of the program.”

Advisory and implementation groups representing a broad cross-section of the University community are working to finalize the specifics of the program.

“The Hanways’ support is especially timely as we move from planning to implementation,” said Douglas Harris, Ph.D., an associate professor of political science and living-learning academic co-director. “The collaboration across academic affairs and student development embodied in the living-learning program will make even more real Loyola’s commitment to ‘educate the whole person,’ in a way that provides both the rigorous academic challenges and the personal care and attention that this community prizes. This generous gift enables us to engage in even more careful and intentional planning, study, training, and collaboration that I believe will make our program a national model of excellence and innovation in educating first-year students.”

For Ed Hanway, his years at Loyola and his experiences as a Loyola parent—son Ed graduated from Loyola in 1999—inspired in him a profound belief in the University’s character and its future. “We learned a tremendous amount at Loyola not just in terms of our professional abilities and the skills we need to compete, but also about the responsibility we have to others, beyond ourselves,” said Ed. “It’s important to invest in Loyola, its leadership, and their goals. Ellen and I are delighted to see the fulfillment of these strategic initiatives.”

It’s their belief in the impact a Loyola education can have on a young person and his or her future that inspired the final component of the Hanways’ gift—the endowment of a permanent, full-tuition scholarship.

“A Loyola education is a privilege that should not be reserved for the privileged,” said Ellen. “We know that financial aid plays a critical role in Loyola’s ability to attract and enroll the most talented and accomplished students, regardless of their socioeconomic backgrounds, and it was important to us to use a portion of our gift to create a scholarship that could make all the difference in a student choosing Loyola over another school.”

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