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Bentley University Receives $2 Million Gift from Alumni Steven and Christine Manfredi
Bentley University Alumni Steven '73 and Christine Manfredi '73 have presented a $2 million financial commitment to support the strategic plan and mission of the university. A significant portion of the funds will be used to build upon and enhance a recent initiative focused on innovative leadership programs for female undergraduate students. The effort spans topics such as developing the confidence to take risks and champion ideas; learning to balance all aspects of personal and professional life; and increasing women's presence as executive officers and corporate directors. Programs targeted toward male students will promote a deeper understanding and support for the development of women as peers and leaders. The balance of the commitment will be used for the university's other strategic priorities.
Manfredi, who serves as vice chairman of the Bentley Board of Trustees, and his wife Christine, a retired partner of Wellington Management, are deeply involved and longstanding supporters of the university. Their daughter, Laura, is a 2010 graduate of Bentley.
"Chris and I believe deeply in the importance of developing the talents of our female students," says Steve Manfredi. "This has become a critical priority for universities across the country, and we believe Bentley is uniquely positioned to make innovative and groundbreaking contributions in this area. Bentley can become truly distinctive on a global scale in this space."
John Mosser, vice president for University Advancement at Bentley, adds: "The Manfredis' commitment is an exciting investment in the future of Bentley. As vice chairman of the Bentley Board of Trustees, Steve has a bird's eye view of what the university is aspiring to accomplish in the years ahead. This gift will have a tremendous impact in helping Bentley to accomplish its goal of international distinctiveness."
Announced this past spring following a generous gift from Bentley supporters Jack and Pam Cumming, the initiative for women's leadership development will also identify curricular elements in women's leadership education including philanthropy and service, as well as strategies to attract promising female applicants to the Bentley University undergraduate program.
"Chris and I are very grateful to Jack and Pam Cumming for their generosity and their vision in getting this initiative underway," says Steve Manfredi. "We couldn't be more thrilled to join them in supporting such a timely and critically important project."
Adds Bentley President Gloria Cordes Larson, "The leadership and generosity that Steve and Chris have shown for Bentley is truly inspiring. Particularly compelling is their passion to help Bentley become a national leader in women's leadership development. The significant scope of the Manfredis' new financial commitment to Bentley will have a transformative impact on the university for decades to come."
"Chris Manfredi has a unique perspective on the life of a female student at Bentley, as she attended when it was rare for women to enroll," notes Board Chairman J. Terence Carleton. "Bentley has since become an attractive choice for female students. The financial support that Steve and Chris are providing will allow the university to attract more accomplished young women from around the world who are seeking a high quality, well-rounded business education. Essentially, this gift will help take Bentley to the next level in attracting and educating promising female leaders."
The Yawkey Foundations have recognized Bentley University’s longstanding commitment to service-learning and awarded the university $500,000 to educate students to effectively lead nonprofit organizations and expand student efforts to help community groups.