Here Are University Donors Pulling Their Support After Schools Initially Failed To Condemn Hamas

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Here Are University Donors Pulling Their Support After Schools Initially Failed To Condemn Hamas

  • Donors and alumni are rescinding their support from Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania in light of public statements that failed to condemn Hamas as a terrorist organization.
  • Several companies vowed that their companies would no longer hire student leaders who signed onto letters blaming Israel for Hamas’ attacks, according to the New York Post.
  • “I am deeply ashamed of my association with the University of Pennsylvania. I refuse to donate another dollar to Penn,” David Magerman wrote.

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Many billionaires, business moguls and university alumni are withdrawing their support from Ivy League universities after school administrators and students failed to strongly condemn the Hamas terrorist attacks against Israel.

Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) were heavily criticized for their response to the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attacks that killed over 1,300 Israelis, after which students and faculty blamed Israel for the conflict. Several high-profile donors from across the country have pulled their funding from schools and blacklisted students from jobs in protest of the universities’ handling of the conflict.

Jon Huntsman Jr., former U.S. ambassador to China and governor of Utah, said in a letter that the Huntsman Foundation would no longer be donating to UPenn after its “silence in the face of reprehensible and historic Hamas evil against the people of Israel” and called the situation “a new low” for the university. The foundation had donated roughly $50 million to the university, of which Huntsman is an alum, over the past three decades and the family’s name is on the main building of the Wharton School of Business.

David Magerman, who helped launch the trading hedge fund Renaissance Technologies and a “Torah-observant Jew,” saidon Oct. 17 that he would also be revoking his funding after UPenn President Liz Magill did not immediately label Hamas as a terrorist organization in her Oct. 10 statement. He said that he was “deeply embarrassed” by his “association” with the school and also called out UPenn for hosting the Palestinian Writes Literature Festival, which featured speakers who openly glorified and even associated with terrorists, only weeks before.

“I am deeply ashamed of my association with the University of Pennsylvania. I refuse to donate another dollar to Penn,” Magerman wrote. “There is no action anyone at Penn can take to change that. I’m not asking for any actions. You have shown me who you are.

Magill later issued a statement on Oct. 15 that condemned “Hamas’s terrorist assault on Israel.”

Jonathon Jacobson, a UPenn alum and the founding member of the venture capital firm HighSage Ventures, wrote a letteron Oct. 16 to Magill informing her that he would only donate $1 a year instead of his typical “multi-seven figure” donations unless she resigns. He further criticized Magill’s “inept handling” of the Palestinian festival and accused her of “hiding behind free speech … as an excuse for your fecklessness.”

Other UPenn donors withdrawing funding include Daniel Lowy, a UPenn alum and founder of EMU Health, Clifford Asness of AQR Capital, and Marc Rowan, CEO of Apollo Global Management and the chairman of the board of advisors at Wharton, according to the New York Sun.

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After over 30 student groups at Harvard refused to condemn Hamas as a terrorist organization and blamed Israel for the attacks, The Wexner Foundation, founded by billionaire Leslie Wexner, announced in an Oct. 16 letter that it would no longer be funding the university and would not be involved in any of its programs.

“In the absence of this clear moral stand, we have determined that the Harvard Kennedy School and The Wexner Foundation are no longer compatible partners,” the letter reads. “Our core values and those of Harvard no longer align. HKS is no longer a place where Israeli leaders can go to develop the necessary skills to address the very real political and societal challenges they face.”

Israeli billionaire Idan Ofer and his wife resigned from the Kennedy School of Government executive board on Oct. 12 saying that they could no longer support “Harvard and its committees” in good faith.

Ken Griffin, a Harvard alum and founder of Billionaire Citadel, and Bill Ackerman, billionaire and CEO of Pershing Square Capital Management, vowed earlier this month that their companies would not hire student leaders at Harvard who signed onto letters blaming Israel for Hamas’ attacks, according to the New York Post.

Jonathan Neman, CEO of Sweetgreen, also said he would “like to know” who signs the letter so he knows “never to hire these people,” according to a statement on X, formerly Twitter.

Larry Hogan, former governor of Maryland, announced Monday that he would no longer be participating in fellowships with the Kennedy School and the Chan School of Public Health and said that the university should have called out the student’s statements on Israel, according to a Twitter post.

“I cannot condone the dangerous anti-Semitism that has taken root on your campus, especially by more than 30 Harvard student organizations attempting to justify and celebrate Hamas’ terrorism against innocent Israeli and American citizens,” Hogan wrote.

Harvard and UPenn did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

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