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$10 Million Alumni Gift to Further Transformation of CMU’s Tepper School of Business

An acclaimed venture capitalist and alumnus of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU)’s Tepper School of Business, together with his wife, has given $10 million to further efforts already underway to enhance the school’s undergraduate and graduate programs in business, the school announced today.

James R. Swartz, a 1966 graduate from the business school, is a noted entrepreneur and venture capitalist and founding partner of Palo Alto‒based Accel Partners. The gift, which he made with his wife, Susan, follows a $67 million gift in November from the charitable foundation of David A. Tepper to create a major new academic hub at the center of CMU’s campus called the Tepper Quadrangle.

The combined gifts will fund construction of a 295,000-square-foot facility in the Tepper Quad that will be home to the Tepper School of Business, the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the Simon Initiative. The new facility is expected to help integrate elements of research and education across the entire CMU campus.

“At Carnegie Mellon I learned to master management science, constructing business models to solve challenges that were completely new to the marketplace and unleashing the power of data for smarter business decisions,” Swartz said in a statement, noting that the skills he developed there have greatly benefited his entrepreneurial career.

In five decades as a venture capitalist, Swartz has been a director of more than 50 successful companies, including numerous pioneering technology companies. He received the 2013 Tepper School Alumni Achievement Award in recognition of both his professional accomplishments and his commitment to education.

“I recognize the university’s new vision for the future of business education and entrepreneurship and I am pleased to contribute toward their efforts to the benefit of new technologies and future generations of students,” Swartz continued.

“This contribution will enable us to bring to life a vision for coordinated programs aimed at entrepreneurship and technology-enhanced learning for the business school and for the entire university in the interdisciplinary spirit that pervades our campus,” CMU President Subra Suresh said in a statement.

Learn more about plans for the new Tepper Quadrangle.