A $50 million investment



Oglethorpe University will offer a new, business-oriented curriculum by Fall 2019 thanks to a donation from a generous alumnus.

Oglethorpe University—located at 4484 Peachtree Road NE in Brookhaven—announced the receipt of a $50 million gift on Sept. 29, marking the largest gift in school history.

School officials state alumnus Q. William “Bill” Hammack Jr., and his wife, Diane Hammack, will create a foundation and endow the $50 million for the purpose of a new business school. The new business school—scheduled to open for the fall 2019 semester—will bear Hammack’s name.

Hammack recently retired as president of C.W. Matthews Contracting Co., a Marietta-based construction company. He credits his business acumen to time spent at Oglethorpe.

“I didn’t know it at the time, but my years at Oglethorpe resulted in much more than the requisite college degree. As I reflect back upon my professional success, I can directly attribute it to the leadership, communication and critical thinking skills I learned by attending a liberal arts institution,” said Hammack. “By making this gift to Oglethorpe, I hope to help a new generation of business leaders find their own success.”

Oglethorpe president Lawrence Schall said the gift will be transformational for the university.

“For an alumnus to make this significant an investment is the greatest possible validation that the education and experience we offer is valuable both to our students and to the community they go on to work within,” Schall said. “This is a truly exciting next chapter in Oglethorpe’s proud history and we will owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to Bill Hammack for many years to come.”

Oglethorpe is primarily a liberal arts and sciences university, but the school has taken strides to broaden its curriculum in recent years. According to an announcement in June, the school will dedicate $20 million to a new Cousins Center for Science and Innovation named after I.W. “Ike” Cousins.

According to Oglethorpe’s director of university communications Renee Vary Keele, the new business school will be located inside the new Cousins Center. She said the school hopes to break ground by May 2018.

“Approximately 25 percent of our students are business majors, and in a global city such as Atlanta, with one of the top business communities in the country, it makes sense for Oglethorpe to invest in its business programs,” Keele said.

“The first order of business is to get a dean for the school in place to lead the school and the curriculum development,” Keele said. “A search committee has already been formed, and the search itself will begin this fall.”

For more information, visit www.oglethorpe.edu.


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