Yesterday Worcester Polytechnic Institute announced that they had received a $40 million donation from a former student – the largest gift the school has ever received, since it was founded in 1865.
Who was the donor?
The donor was a Robert A. Foisie, a highly successful entrepreneur has been president of Matik North America since 1981. In 1952 Foisie had to rely on scholarship funds to help him afford the tuition at Worcester Polytechnic. He now credits much of his subsequent achievements and success to what he learned at the school stating, “Scholarships helped me when I got started, and I’m trying to give back.”
Foisie is already one of Worcester Polytechnic’s largest donors. With this gift comes the question – what influences him to keep on giving? He obviously feels a lot of gratitude towards his former school but what makes him donate millions of dollars?
Well this image from Prospect Visual may provide a clue. It looks like Foisie, who was invited by the school to become a Trustee, has several strong relationships with other constituents there.
And what have we learned about relationships? They are amongst the strongest influencers when it comes to making large donations.