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Michael Bloomberg donates 1.8B to Johns Hopkins University

Billionaire former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg donated $1.8 billion to Maryland's Johns Hopkins University on Sunday.

Bloomberg announced the donation in an op-ed in The New York Times, stating he first donated $5 to the school the year after he graduated from the university in 1964 and has since donated $1.5 billion to support research, teaching and financial aid.

He said the latest $1.8 billion -- believed to be the largest private donation in modern times to higher education -- would allow the university to "need-blind" admission and admit the highest-achieving students regardless of their ability to pay.

"I want to be sure that the school that gave me a chance will be able to permanently open that same door of opportunity for others. And so, I am donating an additional $1.8 billion to Hopkins that will be used for financial aid for qualified low- and middle-income students," Bloomberg wrote.
Johns Hopkins issued a statement,

saying the donation would allow it to offer no-loan financial aid packages, reduce contributions for families who qualify for financial aid, provide "comprehensive student support," and increase the enrollment of Pell grant eligible students, which will "build a more socioeconomically diverse student body."

The university said it would also seek to build an "extensive outreach and recruitment program to ensure that academically qualified students from middle and low income backgrounds understand that a world-class education ... is attainable and affordable" to combat high school students from middle and lower income backgrounds not being matched with competitive college choices.

Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J. Daniels said the "unprecedented and transformative" by Bloomberg "affirms his believe in the promise of this country and the power of accessible higher education."

"Our university was founded in 1876 by a visionary $7 million gift from the Baltimore merchant Johns Hopkins. When it was announced, it was the largest gift of its kind. It created America's first research university and changed the face of American higher education," said Daniels. "With today's announcement of Mike Bloomberg's $1.8 billion investment in financial aid, history has repeated itself."

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