Dear members of the University community / Boozhoo / Aanii / Kwe kwe,
Today in downtown Sudbury, we had the pleasure of announcing that Rob and Cheryl McEwen have made a personal $10 million donation toward our award-winning School of Architecture which opened in September 2013.
In recognition of this significant investment, the Board of Governors with the unanimous support of faculty and staff from the School of Architecture, will name the school in the McEwens’ honour.
Dr. Terrance Galvin, founding director of the School of Architecture, is thrilled by the news and said, “Rob will be a great mentor and we are proud to officially be named the McEwen School of Architecture.”
Mr. McEwen has an outstanding reputation as an industry leader and philanthropist. He was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2007. He is considered a legend in the gold mining industry. He is the Chair and Chief Owner of McEwen Mining Inc., and is also the founder and former Chair and CEO of Goldcorp Inc.—the world’s largest gold producer by market capitalization.
He began his career working as an investment banker at Merrill Lynch, and in 1990 moved into the mining industry. By 1993, he had begun a consolidation of five companies that would take eight years to complete. The resultant company was Goldcorp Inc., which has become a gold mining powerhouse. During Mr. McEwen’s time as CEO, the company’s market capitalization grew from $50 million to over $8 billion, and its share price grew at a compound annual rate of 31%.
Mr. McEwen is a creative and innovative businessman, characteristics that were on full display when he launched the “Goldcorp Challenge” in 2000. He put all of Goldcorp’s proprietary geological data (which went back as far as 1948) into a file and shared it publically in the hopes that outside experts would tell him where to find the rich deposits he and his team had struggled to identify. The challenge offered $575,000 in prizes to the participants with the best methods, and in the end more than 50 previously unidentified sites were mapped, of which 80% yielded significant gold reserves valued at over $6 billion.
Mr. McEwen is a trustee on the board of the XPRIZE Foundation – a non-profit organization that designs and manages public competitions intended to encourage technological developments that could benefit mankind. He is also active with the International Society of Stem Cell Research.
To date, Rob and Cheryl have donated in excess of $50 million to encourage excellence and innovation in healthcare and education.
Mr. McEwen first visited Laurentian in 2014 at the invitation of Peter Crossgrove, a former Laurentian Governor who passed away in June 2015 days after receiving an honorary doctorate from the University. Rob attended the Goodman School of Mines lecture featuring Pierre Lassonde. He had the opportunity to visit the School of Architecture, during which he indicated that he had originally wanted to be an architect. He showed genuine interest in what students, faculty and elders were doing during his visit.
We thank the McEwen family for their very generous support, and share their excitement in changing architecture education globally.
This is the 3rd school naming to honour eight-figure transformative gifts at Laurentian in less than five years. The Bharti School of Engineering was named in 2011 and the Goodman School of Mines in 2012 It is a testament to the momentum and growing national recognition of our university.
Merci, Thank you, Miigwech.