Phil and Penny Knight gift $500M to University of Oregon

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A building at the University of Oregon. (Facebook)_410556

Editor’s note: We had incorrectly listed the donation amount in previous versions of this story. We regret the error.

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Phil and Penny Knight have donated a $500 million gift to the University of Oregon for the second time in five years.

The school announced the generous donation on Tuesday morning, saying it will go towards launching the next phase of the Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact. The funds will be utilized for bioengineering, applied scientific research and training, new opportunities for more students and more faculty positions. The money will also go towards a second building on the Knight Campus. 

“The work that will take place at the Knight Campus will improve people’s lives directly through innovative treatments and devices, and indirectly through company formation, jobs and economic development,” Michael H. Schill, the University of Oregon president and professor of law, said.

Schill said this donation further cements the school’s position as a hub for innovation and discovery, all while creating more opportunities for students.

“Words cannot adequately express our gratitude for the Knights’ faith in the University of Oregon, so we will need to demonstrate our thanks through the pace and passion of our work.”  

Robert E. Guldberg, vice president and Robert and Leona DeArmond executive director of the Knight Campus, echoed Schill’s sentiment, saying the $500 million gift allows them to achieve the foundation’s vision in a shorter amount of time than otherwise possible.

“What would take other institutions decades to achieve is happening here in just a matter of years,” said Guldberg. “Our goal is to dramatically shorten the timeline between discovery and societal impact through world-class research, training and entrepreneurship in a nimble scientific enterprise. The vision of a campus focused on science that impacts society is resonating with so many people. We are incredibly grateful to the Knights for their unbelievable support to continue the momentum towards that vision.” 

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