Emory University School of Law this month received its largest donation to date.
Alumus Robert Henrikson, former president and chief executive officer of MetLife Inc., and his wife, Mary, pledged $2.5 million for minority student scholarships and other financial aid programs.
It was not the first time that the Henriksons have funded diversity programs at Emory. In 2002, the couple gave the law school $1 million to establish the C. Robert Henrikson Endowed Scholarship, intended to recruit diverse students to campus. More than half of the latest gift — $1.5 million — will go into that program.
“The Henrikson scholarship has been very important in our efforts to build a diverse class of talented students each year,” Emory dean Robert Schapiro said. “This new gift will greatly extend the endowment’s current reach.”
In a typical year, about one-third of Emory’s law class comes from ethnic groups underrepresented at law schools, according to administrators.
“Many of these students have been the first in their families to graduate from college and pursue a legal education,” said Joella Hricik, associate dean for development and alumni relations.
The remaining $1 million of the Henriksons’ donation will be used to attract matching gifts to the school’s annual fund.
Henrikson graduated from Emory Law in 1972 and spent much of his career at MetLife. He became chairman of the board, president and chief executive officer in 2006 and retired in 2011. Henrikson now serves on the board of trustees of Emory University.
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