HBS Receives $10M Gift for Curriculum Innovation

A $10 million gift to Harvard Business School will launch a new curriculum innovation program focused on second-year MBA courses, the Harvard Crimson reported Wednesday. Family of the late Boston businessman William F. Connell made the donation, which will establish the Margot and William F Connell Family MBA Program Innovation Fund.

The gift was made in honor of Connell’s 50th Reunion from Harvard Business School, which coincided with their son Terry’s graduation from HBS, according to an announcement by the school.

Following its review of its first-year courses over the past several years, HBS faculty will use the newly created fund to redesign the MBA program’s second-year curriculum. According the school’s website, those changes will include more integration between the program’s first two years, as well as an expanded array of learning opportunities and more engagement in practice.

The Connell family’s gift will provide a significant portion of the funding for this major undertaking, including support of new course development and case writing needs, new technology applications or platforms, and increased faculty development efforts. The program’s second-year redesign is expected to take around three years to plan and put into practice.

HBS dean Nitin Nohria expressed his gratitude for this generous gift, saying “This new donation from the Connells provides us with the financial support we need to enhance our second-year curriculum and make it a deeper, more cohesive, and more innovative experience that will have a life-long impact on our students.”

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