A $30 Million Endowment Will Help Update Housing at Harvard

by Katie Sloan

Cambridge, Mass. The funds will help modernize undergraduate housing.

Kirkland is one of Harvard’s 12 on-campus dorms, or “houses.”Cambridge, Mass. — The Hutchins Family Foundation (HFF) has given Harvard University $30 million, part of which will be used to launch a housing revitalization program.

The Hutchins Family Challenge Fund for House Renewal will award matching gifts to alumni and friends interested in supporting the revitalization of Harvard’s undergraduate housing system through naming opportunities. Undergraduates live among faculty and graduate students in 12 on-campus “houses.”

In the 1920s, Harvard created a system of residential education for undergraduates centered on the 12 houses, home today to 98 percent of the college’s student population.

“When Harvard alumni are introduced for the first time, the first question they ask is not ‘Which year?’ but, rather, ‘Which House?’ ” says Glenn Hutchins, who endowed the donation. “Graduates all know the vital role the Houses played in their lives as students.

“But this donation is not about our fondly remembered undergraduate days or even historic preservation — it is about the future. The renovation of these magnificent buildings will enable Harvard to do for future generations what it did for us. Perhaps most important, it underscores Harvard’s commitment to offer an undergraduate experience which is the best among its peers.”

The goals for the buildings are to include new physical structures — from “smart” classrooms and study nooks to new social spaces and music/art practice rooms.

Hutchins is a longtime university supporter and co-founder of Silver Lake, a global private investment firm that zeroes in on technology companies. Silver Lake has approximately $14 billion in assets under management.

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