Trouble viewing? Open in web browser.

Journalist Resources Stanford News Stanford Experts Contact Us
Stanford University homepage

News Service

July 1, 2004

Stanford's School of Humanities and Sciences breaks $100 million mark in Hewlett Challenge


The School of Humanities and Sciences (H&S) at Stanford announced today that it has surpassed $100 million in new gifts and pledges in the Hewlett Challenge.

Having raised $100,529,895 in new gifts and pledges, the school received Hewlett Challenge matching funds of $98.9 million, bringing the total to nearly $200 million in new endowment for the core of Stanford University.

"This is a truly important milestone," said Sharon R. Long, the Vernon R. and Lysbeth Warren Anderson Dean of Humanities and Sciences. "We could not be happier, or more grateful, to the Hewlett Foundation and to our many generous donors for making such a significant, long-term investment in Stanford and the School of Humanities and Sciences."

The leaders of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation created the Hewlett Challenge with a gift to H&S of $300 million and an additional gift of $100 million to Stanford University's Campaign for Undergraduate Education on May 2, 2001. The extraordinary gift to H&S, which has been called The Hewlett Challenge, was designed to bolster the school's endowment for future generations of scholars and students and strengthen key areas in the school. Three years later the challenge is well on its way to achieving its goal.

The $100 million in new gifts and pledges is earmarked to support dozens of professorships, directorships, graduate fellowships, and new or existing academic programs. Existing areas benefiting from the Hewlett Challenge include the Overseas Studies Program, the Institute for Research on Women and Gender, and the Archaeology Program. Among the new programs created with Hewlett Challenge matching funds are the Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Science and Technology and the International, Comparative and Area Studies Division, which includes the new Islamic Studies program, other area studies, and the France-Stanford Center for Interdisciplinary Studies. In addition, some unrestricted gifts of endowment have been matched, offering flexibility to the school and its leadership to direct the funds where they are needed most.

"This gift was made in the spirit of my father's approach to philanthropy," said Walter Hewlett, chairman of the board of the Hewlett Foundation. "He used his wealth to help others solve problems, and the H&S gift was designed with that approach in mind. We are pleased to be able to provide financial leverage to the School of Humanities and Sciences to achieve long-term financial stability, and we hope that the Hewlett gift will strengthen the school for many years to come."

While the $100 million mark is an important threshold to cross, it is only the first step, according to Long. By 2009, H&S seeks to double the Hewlett gift, to $600 million, by continuing to build core endowment support for areas such as professorships, faculty scholars, graduate fellowships and strategically identified program areas. Further endowed support could help to create funds for innovation and faculty recruitment, and launch new initiatives, such as Film Studies and the Program for Post-doctoral Fellows in Physical and Mathematical Sciences.

"The Hewlett Challenge has been tremendously effective in attracting support for H&S and furthering the reach of gifts from H&S donors," said Eugenie Van Wynen, associate dean of external relations for the School of Humanities and Sciences. "With either one-to-one or one-to-two matching funds awarded to gifts of endowment to H&S, the Hewlett Challenge has created a partnership with donors to ensure the brightest future possible -- not just for H&S but also for Stanford and each of its students. We are deeply grateful to our alumni, parents and friends who are helping to ensure a strong liberal arts core at Stanford."

Endowment gifts provide -- in perpetuity -- a reliable income stream for the school, as the interest earned on the endowed gift, not the principal, is used to support the school's faculty, students and programs. Currently, endowment income represents 22 percent of the school's funding.

The progress in raising endowment support for H&S through the Hewlett Challenge brings the school closer to fulfilling another important aspect of the challenge, which is to honor the memory of William Hewlett, co-founder of the Hewlett-Packard Company.

"This gift honors my [late] father," said Walter Hewlett at the announcement of the foundation's gift to Stanford and H&S in 2001. "It honors his lifetime of philanthropy, his lifelong devotion to Stanford, and his passionate belief in the value of a liberal arts education. By helping Stanford fulfill its promise -- namely, increasing knowledge and helping young people -- we honor his wishes."


About the School of Humanities and Sciences

H&S is dedicated to the highest levels of excellence in the creation and dissemination of new knowledge spanning the core humanities, arts, languages and literatures, social sciences, mathematics, and physical and life sciences. As Stanford's largest school, H&S awards nearly 80 percent of Stanford undergraduate degrees and more than 40 percent of doctoral degrees. Its distinguished faculty includes Nobel laureates, Pulitzer Prize winners, MacArthur Fellows, and many members of the national scholarly academies. For more information, visit

About the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation makes grants to address the most serious social and environmental problems facing society, where risk capital, responsibly invested, may make a difference over time. The Foundation places a high value on sustaining and improving institutions that make positive contributions to society. For more information, visit



Lisa Kwiatkowski, School of Humanities and Sciences: (650) 723-3901,

Eric Brown, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation: (650) 234-4500 ext. 5743,


Sharon Long, dean of the School of Humanities and Sciences: (650) 723-3232;

Paul Brest, president, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation: (650) 234-4500

Related Information


Update your subscription

  • Email:
  • Phone: (650) 723-2558

More Stanford coverage

Facebook Twitter iTunes YouTube Futurity RSS

Journalist Resources Stanford News Stanford Experts Contact Us

© Stanford University. Stanford, California 94305. (650) 723-2300.