$1M gift, $1M matching grant for Jewish studies at Tulane U
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Jewish studies department at a private university in New Orleans has received a $1 million donation and the same amount as a matching challenge grant from a Chicago-based foundation, the university said Thursday.
Tulane University said in a news release that the Tawani Foundation is establishing an endowed fund for the study of American Jewish history and culture, with programs to include a speaker series and a Jewish leadership course.
“Despite the challenges posed by the ongoing pandemic, Tulane University continues to do impressive work and prioritizes focusing on its students,” said the foundation’s head, philanthropist and retired Army Lt. Col. Jennifer Pritzker. “Education is such an important tool, and I’m proud to know this contribution will help others grow their understanding of American Jewish history and culture.”
She named the fund after her mother, Audrey G. Ratner of Cleveland. Ratner’s grandchildren include two Tulane alumni, one of whom is Pritzker’s son.
Tulane President Michael Fitts said, “This gift greatly enhances Tulane’s capacity in a vital area of scholarship, allowing us to engage in a deeper and broader study of the Jewish experience and how it has shaped the history of our nation and world.”
The Ratner Jewish Leadership Course will be aimed at developing critical leadership and management skills in both Jewish and non-Jewish students, with a focus on the American Jewish experience, the university said. It will combine academic coursework on Jewish culture and life with experiential learning opportunities and community service projects.
The $1 million matching challenge aims to create new named endowments, and will match new donations dollar for dollar.