MIT receives $261 million from Lord Foundation

Allocation of funding is flexible

The Lord Foundation of Massachusetts donated $261 million to MIT, MIT News announced in an article Nov. 13. MIT will keep its options open regarding allocation of the funds. 

“We ... appreciate the intellectual freedom unrestricted funding offers students to pursue ideas that excite them and excite their faculty advisor,” Provost Martin Schmidt PhD ’88 wrote in an email to The Tech.

This past June, MIT’s Academic Council discussed and considered long-term challenges faced by the Institute and identified areas where new funds could be beneficial. 

One of these areas was support for graduate students and graduate research, Schmidt wrote. Climate change and advancement of a more welcoming and inclusive climate on campus are two other possible areas for the funding, Schmidt continued. Further discussion between Schmidt and the Academic Council will take place to determine how the money is to be spent.

The Lord Foundations were established by Thomas Lord to support institutions seeking to advance research, education, and innovation. Each foundation benefits a specific university or institution selected by Lord and his successor, Donald Alstadt. 

The Lord Foundation of Massachusetts specifically benefits only MIT, beginning its support of the Institute in 1986. The other Lord Foundations support Duke University, the University of Southern California, and the Cleveland Clinic. Since 1986, the Lord Foundation of Massachusetts has provided $34.4 million in funds to MIT.

The funds are from proceeds from the sale of Lord Corporation stock held by the Jura Corporation, Melissa Buscher, chief communications officer for the Lord Corporation, wrote in an email to The Tech