Hiram College has received an unrestricted gift of $2 million from a donor who wishes to remain anonymous. An unrestricted gift of this magnitude advances projects and priorities included in Hiram’s academic redesign: The New Liberal Arts™.

“Over the last year, faculty and staff have come together to design and implement widespread changes in academic majors, the core curriculum, and experiential activities. Together, these changes ensure that our graduates develop the 21st-century skill set and mindset they need to flourish in life and in their careers,” says Lori Varlotta, Ph.D., president of Hiram College. The donor who made this incredibly generous gift called it “an endorsement of the administration and the faculty who are charting Hiram’s path to the future”. Varlotta says that words can barely express the gratitude that she and others feel for such support.

In less than one year, The New Liberal Arts has ushered in three new majors: Sport Management, International Studies, and Crime, Law, and Justice. Additionally, with its emphasis on hands-on learning, The New Liberal Arts requires that all students complete an internship, research project, or study away trip before graduation. And this summer, more Hiram students than ever are participating in internships and research. The college’s 550-acre James H. Barrow Biological Field Station alone has 27 student interns involved in everything from eco-management, to water research, to biodiversity projects.

Starting this fall, freshmen students will enjoy an enhanced Freshman Year Experience, and they will be mentored in building an e-portfolio that captures signature assignments, personal reflections, written essays, photographs, and more.

Hiram’s New Liberal Arts has garnered considerable attention from industry press. More importantly, however, Hiram junior Henry Schwendler, one of the field station’s stewards says, “the heightened focus on out-of-classroom experiences, hands-on learning, and career-readiness makes my Hiram education even more meaningful.”

Given Hiram’s four consecutive record-breaking fundraising years, officials have recently established the 1850 Society to recognize its top donors. Members of this esteemed group include those who have given $1 million or more to Hiram College or those who have documented a will estate commitment at the same level. The inaugural 47 members, whose collective lifetime giving tops $102 million, were honored at the Donors of Distinction event during Hiram’s 2019 Alumni Weekend.

In October 2018, Hiram announced Vision 20/20, a $40 million boutique fundraising campaign also aimed at advancing The New Liberal Arts. For more information about the campaign, visit www.hiram.edu/vision2020. Gifts can also be made to support one of the many funding opportunities outlined by contacting the Office of Alumni Relations and Development at 800-705-5050.

by Jenelle Bayus