The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania announced the largest single gift ever given to the School—$50 million from Marc J. Rowan (W’84, WG’85) and Carolyn Rowan. Their generous funding will enable Wharton to attract and retain world-leading faculty and support the Penn Wharton Budget Model (PWBM), the University’s groundbreaking economic policy analysis program. Mr. Rowan is chair of Wharton’s Board of Overseers, a Penn trustee and co-chair of the School’s More Than Ever fundraising campaign.
The Rowans’ gift will enhance Wharton’s ability to address the most complex global challenges and opportunities head on through groundbreaking research and exceptional teaching. With this commitment, Wharton will recruit three Rowan Distinguished Professors who are global leaders in their fields, who will inspire faculty and students alike, and who will build bridges between academia and business. The Rowans’ gift will also support the appointment of a select number of Rowan Fellows for five-year terms to recognize and support Wharton’s most distinguished faculty in their commitment to innovative research and teaching.
Mr. and Mrs. Rowan’s generosity to the Penn Wharton Budget Model, which uses big data analytics to promote evidence-based policymaking on the key economic issues facing the United States, builds upon their foundational commitment to the primacy of societal impact in the Penn Compact 2022.
“With profound gratitude to Marc and Carolyn Rowan, I anticipate the tremendous impact of their philanthropy on the University of Pennsylvania,” said Penn President Amy Gutmann. “Their investment in Penn’s future will strengthen our intellectual resources, provide our students with life-changing mentors, and mobilize our knowledge for the advancement of society.”
“I am deeply grateful for Marc and Carolyn’s extraordinary gift, which reflects their passion to bring to Wharton the most innovative researchers working on the world’s most pressing and important questions,” said Wharton Dean Geoffrey Garrett. “Their commitment is the cornerstone of a campaign that will empower Wharton, more than ever, to create leaders who will change the world.”
“Inspiring Wharton faculty who were committed to cutting edge business education were catalysts for my success,” said Mr. Rowan. “Carolyn and I are honored to join the vision of the Wharton community to bring the School’s outstanding students face to face with the most important thinkers of our time. As top Wharton researchers advance and shape their fields, they transform the lives of their students, preparing them to make a difference in the business world and beyond.”
Contributing to Wharton and Penn since 1984, Mr. and Mrs. Rowan have supported undergraduate and MBA financial aid, faculty, capital projects, the Dean’s fund, Wharton Customer Analytics, The Wharton Fund, the Institute of Contemporary Art, the football program, Penn Medicine’s Basser Center for BRCA and Penn Medicine’s Orphan Disease Center.
Mr. Rowan is a co-founder and Senior Managing Director of Apollo Global Management, LLC, a leading alternative asset manager focused on contrarian and value-oriented investments across private equity, credit-oriented capital markets, insurance and real estate. He graduated summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School with a BS and an MBA in Finance.