MBA Class of 2008 Gift Shatters Record: $1.2 Million

At graduation, the MBA Class of 2008’s record-breaking $1.2 million gift to the business school exceeded previous records both in terms of dollars raised and classmates participating.

June 01, 2008

Members of the MBA Class of 2008 will be remembered as the class of One Million Dreams, the name they gave their class gift campaign when they embarked on their goal to raise $1 million. At graduation, their record-breaking $1.2 million gift to the business school exceeded previous records both in terms of dollars raised and classmates participating.


Members of the MBA Class of 2008 created “dream” statements expressing their hopes for the future of the GSB.

“You are an amazing class, and all of us at the school are deeply grateful for your generosity and thoughtfulness,” said Dean Robert L. Joss at the school’s 83rd Commencement on June 14.

“The final participation number stunned everyone,” says Ellen Otto, the business school development officer who guided and advised the student 2008 Development Committee leaders. By all measures, this year’s class gift was unprecedented: 97.6 percent of the class pledged $595,392 over four years beginning in 2009. With matching funds the total came to $1.2 million. Just before the diploma ceremony, the Class of 2008 gathered in Bishop Auditorium to prepare for the processional. There, 2008 Development Committee co-chairs Rob Bland and Jim Sinai presented a check big enough to cover an office desk to Dean Joss and Roshni Jain, co-president of the MBA Class of 2009, who accepted it on behalf of current and future Stanford GSB students.

As part of their pledge to the class gift, members of the MBA Class of 2008 contributed personal “dream” statements expressing their hopes and desires for the school. The hundreds of statements centered around themes of reputation, image, and impact; service, public management, global management; community, diversity, and fellowships; and faculty, courses, and case studies. “My dream for Stanford GSB is that it would continue to find the smartest, brightest, most open-minded people in the world and bring them together to create a synergy that cannot be found anywhere else,” wrote one student.

Early in the fundraising process, leaders of the development committee recruited a team of 47 classmates to serve as ambassadors to the rest of the class, and then set out to exceed all their goals. In addition to Bland and Sinai, committee members included Megan Anderson, Kenny Gardner, Jack Lynch, Katriona MacIver, Philip Stenberg, and Rong Zhang.

Congratulations to the Class of 2008 for this phenomenal achievement!

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