by Ethan Whipple, Class of 2012
A $25,000 leadership gift from Chris and Erin Hagstrom of New York City will provide financial aid for business students while carrying on the legacy of Chris’s late mother, Karen J. Hagstrom, a former St. Bonaventure graduate student, the University announced today.
The Hagstroms’ generous gift contributes to St. Bonaventure’s $15 million campaign to construct a new building to house its School of Business. It will establish an endowed scholarship to be awarded yearly starting in fall 2015 to lower-income School of Business applicants.
The scholarship honors Karen J. Hagstrom, who died in 2007. She earned her master of science in education from SUNY-Fredonia (though she also studied at St. Bonaventure) and taught in the Falconer Central School system.
“She was a phenomenal mom, an influential teacher and an amazing person,” Chris Hagstrom said. “She tutored students constantly, right up until the point when she fell ill, always promoting the idea of learning.”
Chris Hagstrom is also a Bonaventure alumnus. He completed his undergraduate degree in finance in 1992 and now serves as Head of Prime Service Sales in the Americas at UBS in New York City.
Growing up with his mother in Bemus Point, Hagstrom felt that St. Bonaventure represented the best possible education in his area. “My parents had four boys to put through school,” he recalled. “The fact that I was able to attend Bona’s meant a lot to us.”
“I know my mother would like to help others afford a solid education,” Hagstrom said. “She had a profound impact on the lives of countless students. Creating a scholarship in her name seemed to me like the most meaningful way to perpetuate her educational ideals and her legacy.”
Construction of the new business building will begin by June, with occupancy set for fall 2013. The center will feature high-tech classrooms, a financial services lab, a state-of-the-art boardroom, and special meeting and office spaces for student groups and faculty.
“The new School of Business center is a key element in our overall strategic plan,” said Sr. Margaret Carney, O.S.F., S.T.D., president of the university. “We have seen firsthand the power of new facilities on our campus, and know that investing in this building will position us to better compete for high-quality students and faculty who want to be part of a unique and distinctive scholarly environment."
The $15 million campaign will provide: $10 million for the construction of the new business center; $4 million in endowments for faculty and programmatic support to ensure a vibrant intellectual community; and $1 million for building endowment.
More than $13 million has been raised under the leadership of Robert Daugherty, ’77, university trustee and campaign chair. “We are grateful for the financial commitments that have been made to date,” said Mr. Daugherty, a retired partner of PricewaterhouseCoopersLLP. “Now we need the leverage of many. We need the help of our alumni, parents and friends to make this campaign a success.”
St. Bonaventure’s School of Business is among a select group of business schools (20 percent) in the U.S. and a very select group (5 percent) internationally to hold accreditation by the Association for the Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).
“We are in demand,” said Carol Fischer, dean of the School of Business, adding that some 30 percent of St. Bonaventure’s student body is composed of business majors.
“Our faculty, students and graduates have made the case for this new building,” Dr. Fischer said. “They have demonstrated through academic excellence and through success in the business realm that St. Bonaventure’s School of Business is world-class quality. Reaching our goal in this campaign will enable us to maintain and build upon our traditional strengths, as well as develop new strengths in our distinctive niches, such as service learning.”
The leadership gift from the Hagstrom family is among nearly 300 commitments made to the campaign by St. Bonaventure alumni and friends.
Donations to the campaign may be made by visiting www.sbu.edu/bullishonbusiness/donate or by calling (800) 664-1273.
For more on the planned business center and the School of Business Campaign, go to www.sbu.edu/bullishonbusiness.
About the University: Inspired for more than 150 years by the Catholic Franciscan values of individual dignity, community inclusiveness, and service, St. Bonaventure University cultivates graduates who are confident and creative communicators, collaborative leaders and team members, and innovative problem solvers who are respectful of themselves, others, and the diverse world around them.