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Dickinson College Receives $5 Million Gift from Alumnus, Emeritus Trustee Sam Rose '58

Sam Rose

Sam Rose '58

New Rose gift to support financial aid and endow the Rose-Walters Prize

by Christine Baksi

Continuing a legacy of deep, philanthropic support and commitment to his alma mater, Dickinson College alumnus and emeritus trustee Sam Rose '58 has donated $5 million to the college. The generous gift will directly support financial aid for underserved students and will endow The Sam Rose ’58 and Julie Walters Prize at Dickinson College for Environmental Activism, Dickinson’s highly regarded prize for environmentalism.

“This gift is an indication of Sam’s support of Dickinson’s direction and its growing momentum as we continue to move the college forward, committed to a sustainable society and to accessibility for all students,” said President Margee Ensign. “I am honored to be able to work with Sam, and I thank him for his continued support of our great college.”

Much of Rose’s prior support for Dickinson has helped to level the playing field for students who would not otherwise be able to afford a Dickinson education. Since 2000, he has committed more than $10 million to The Samuel G. Rose ’58 Scholarship for economically disadvantaged students from urban areas, which has benefitted more than 150 students. As a scholarship supporter, Rose attends an annual dinner with his scholarship recipients and brings guests who offer the students advice and encouragement. A significant portion of this new gift will increase endowed support for this scholarship.

In 2012, Rose and his wife Julie Walters created the Rose-Walters Prize to focus attention on the need to reduce the impact of human lives on the planet. The $100,000 prize is given annually to an individual or organization that makes a defining difference and advances responsible action on behalf of the planet, its resources and people. This year’s recipient is the advocacy organization Our Children’s Trust. Previous recipients are Brett Jenks, CEO of conservation nonprofit Rare; Pulitzer Prize-winning author Elizabeth Kolbert; award-winning actor and environmental activist Mark Ruffalo; author and environmental activist Bill McKibben; Apple’s vice president of environment, policy and social initiatives and former EPA administrator Lisa Jackson; and award-winning nature photographer James Balog. Endowing the Rose-Walters Prize secures Dickinson’s place in the national dialogue on broader environmental issues and increases public awareness of the dangers of unregulated pollution.

In 2012, Rose and Walters also donated $6 million for a new, 22,000-square-foot Durden Athletic Training Center, named in honor of former Dickinson president William Durden, class of 1971, and his wife, Dr. Elke Durden. Rose’s affinity with Dickinson athletics was cemented as a student athlete. In 1958, Rose and the Dickinson lacrosse team made college history by winning Dickinson’s first and only national title. “Sam’s generosity makes an enormous difference in the lives of our students,” said Kirk Swenson, vice president for college advancement. “Making a tangible difference in the world through Dickinson is at the root of Sam’s philanthropy.”

Rose is a real estate developer and attorney with more than 40 years of experience in commercial development, primarily in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. “Scholarship support can be the difference between receiving a college education or taking another path in life. A Dickinson education is a great way to prepare them to tackle the substantial challenges that lie ahead,” offered Rose.

A founding partner of Greenbaum and Rose Associates, Rose is an emeritus trustee of the college and previously served as vice chair of the board of directors of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. He and Walters are members of Dickinson’s Founders’ Society, which honors donors whose philanthropy has made an indelible impact on the college.

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Published May 7, 2018