The Johns Hopkins Gazette: October 11, 1999
October 11, 1999
VOL. 29, NO. 7


Foundation Raises Pledge to $10 Million

New France-Merrick gift focuses primarily on community service

Johns Hopkins Gazette Online Edition

The France-Merrick Foundation of Baltimore has added $3.3 million to earlier commitments to Johns Hopkins, bringing to $10 million its total pledge to the university's current fund-raising campaign. The new gifts include:

$1 million to endow the School of Nursing's community initiatives, including four community health clinics operated by nursing faculty and students;

$1 million for scholarships at the Homewood campus for undergraduates who have excelled in community service before coming to Hopkins;

$1 million for the planned recreation center at Homewood, scheduled for completion by July 2001; and

$300,000 to complete the editing of The Papers of Dwight David Eisenhower, a 21-volume effort ongoing at the university since 1963.

"We could not be more pleased than to have the France-Merrick Foundation's exceptional support of these important programs," said President William R. Brody. "The foundation works tirelessly to better the Baltimore community, and we are proud to be considered worthy of its support."

Brody said France-Merrick gifts have been critical to the Johns Hopkins Initiative campaign since its beginning. "The foundation's early gifts to the new nursing and cancer buildings, athletic facilities, the student arts center and the interfaith center were critical catalysts in attracting other support for those projects," the president said.

Over the years, the foundation and its predecessors have also supported the Downtown Center of the School of Professional Studies in Business and Education, restorations of the historic Homewood and Evergreen houses, the Brain Injury Survivors project in the Department of Neurology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, the mobile health unit of Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center and other Hopkins programs.

The foundation has a particular interest in promoting both community service and closer ties between Johns Hopkins and surrounding neighborhoods. Both the Homewood scholarships and the School of Nursing endowment portions of the newest commitment represent that interest. Nursing school faculty and students, for instance, provide both treatment and preventive care to some of Baltimore's most vulnerable populations in 40 programs, including the four clinics.

"We have a commitment to the families living in Baltimore City," said Sue K. Donaldson, dean of the School of Nursing. "We are a presence in the neighborhood, and people count on us. The very generous gift from the France-Merrick Foundation allows us to continue to deliver quality health care to some of the city's neediest families. In essence, this gift is improving the quality of life for an entire community."

Scholarships for incoming freshmen who have excelled in community service will reinforce a decades-old tradition of student voluntarism at the Homewood campus, said Larry G. Benedict, dean of Homewood Student Affairs.

"Right now, there are more than 50 student-run service groups on campus, including one--the Tutorial Project--that has helped inner-city elementary students with schoolwork for more than 40 years," Benedict said. "More than 500 students a semester take part in these programs. These France-Merrick scholarships will demonstrate how much the foundation and the university value the contributions these students make to their communities."

The Johns Hopkins Initiative was launched publicly in 1994, with an initial goal of $900 million that was later extended to $1.2 billion. As of Oct. 1, the campaign had received total commitments of $1.305 billion. Of that, $741.4 million is for endowment and facilities, the primary focus of the campaign. Between now and its conclusion in June 2000, the campaign is concentrating particularly on support for student aid and the libraries.