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Class of 2019 Makes a Record-Breaking Class Gift

The Yale School of Management’s Class of 2019 pledged more than $500,000 for the school in its parting Class Gift.

By Karen Guzman

Yale SOM Class GiftMembers of the Yale School of Management’s Class of 2019 have pledged a record-breaking $550,676 in the Class Gift, with 92% of all graduating students participating.

Pledges came from graduates of the full-time MBA, Master of Advanced Management (MAM), Master of Management Studies (MMS) programs in Systemic Risk and in Global Business and Society, and MBA for Executives (EMBA) programs. The average contribution was $1,169.

Each year, graduating  students leave an important legacy by making a gift to the Yale SOM Alumni Fund, the school’s most critical source of flexible funding.

“Gifts from graduating students are the most important financial support our school receives, and this year’s efforts and outcomes were astounding,” said Dean Edward A. Snyder. “Our students should be proud Yale SOM has the sixth largest endowment among global business schools—not bad for a school in its fifth decade!”

While all programs had strong class participation this year, both the MMS and EMBA student cohorts posted 100% rates.

“As the inaugural class of the Master of Management Studies in Global Business and Society program, we’re proud of having achieved 100%,” said co-chair Paul Bashir ’19. “This leaves an important legacy and sets the tone for future GBS cohorts. It was our opportunity to give back to the school for the amazing experience  we had here at Yale.”

The full-time MBA class boasted an 89.7% participation rate. Co-chair Cansu Arslan ’19 said her classmates’ response reminded her of why she chose to be part of the Yale community. “It was humbling to see so many of my classmates coming together to pay it forward for the next generation of SOM students,” she said.

Joel Getz, senior associate dean for development and alumni relations, said the pledge “speaks volumes” about the students. “Their generosity, caring, and  enthusiastic support of the next generation of students is a tangible reminder of the incredible community here at Yale SOM.”

MAM co-chair Michael Stapleton ’19 said that his classmates helped raise awareness about the gift. “I was surprised to see how many gave generously and encouraged others to do the same,” Stapleton said. “It was an incredible display, not only of financial generosity, but of engagement with the program and with SOM.”

Full-time MBA co-chair Cliff Sakutukwa ’19 added that his classmates displayed “ubuntu at its best.” (Ubuntu is a southern African term that embodies the virtues of compassion, sharing, and connected humanity. Sakutukwa hails from Zimbabwe.)

“The spirit of giving, helping out, community, and not being too serious about things—which everyone demonstrated during the campaign—is the quintessence of what Yale SOM means to me,” Sakutukwa said. “That this campaign’s pledge total was record-breaking does not come as a surprise to me.”