SkyscraperCity banner
1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Senior Button Pusher
Joined
·
17,165 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ecstatic USF gets biggest bounty

An $18.5-million donation and a state match, totaling $34.5-million, will allow USF to build the Patel Center.

By DAVID KARP, St Petersburg Times Staff Writer
Published May 20, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


TAMPA - The University of South Florida got the biggest donation in its history Thursday, a gift worth $34.5-million that USF hopes will place it on the world map.

The university will use the money from Dr. Kiran Patel and his wife, Dr. Pallavi Patel, to build the Kiran C. Patel Center for Global Solutions on USF's Tampa campus.

"The world is shrinking and becoming global," Patel, 57, said during an interview Thursday. "So it's time to think global."

The $62.5-million center will become a place where foreign leaders gather and researchers study issues such as global hunger and international trade, university leaders said.

"This really sets the university apart from other universities in the world," said USF president Judy Genshaft. "I really see this as a very unique opportunity for the university. And in some ways, it is a challenge to make this the best in the world."

The university planned a day's worth of events today to celebrate the gift from Patel, a Tampa cardiologist who was born in Africa, educated in India and made millions as a health care executive in Florida.

The events begin with a briefing for 65 professors and end with a 7 p.m. dinner at the Marshall Center, which 1,000 people were invited to attend. "This is incredible," an ebullient Genshaft said.

When built, the Patel Center could include four pavilions to house scholars, a world-class conference center, classrooms, a 500-seat auditorium, and facilities to house foreign dignitaries.

It will be on Fowler Avenue just west of the Dr. Kiran C. Patel Charter School and the Dr. Pallavi Patel Pediatric Clinic, two other USF projects funded by the couple.

The center will give USF faculty the backing to apply for grants from foundations that have been out of reach, said provost Renu Khator, one of the architects of the idea.

"This will give us the launching pad to be competitive," Khator said. "The groundwork is there to take this university to that next level of excellence."

Patel's $18.5-million donation include $10-million to build the center, $2.5-million to operate it and $6-million for an endowment. The donation will allow USF to receive $16-million from a state program that matches private donations to universities.

That brings the total value of Patel's gift to $34.5-million.

About $7-million of Patel's gift will be given only after USF raises $14-million from other donors. Those donations also can be matched by the state.

In total, the $62.5-million center will include $14-million in private donations, $18.5-million from the Patels, and $30-million in state matching funds over many years.

The gift makes the Patels the largest single donor in USF history, said Michael Rierson, USF's vice president for advancement. "It's a Rockefeller-style gesture," he said. "It's bigger than big."

Patel said Thursday he first began talking to university officials about the idea three years ago.

By then, he had already established a reputation for philanthropy. He and his wife have given $5-million to build a school at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, $3-million for a heart-research institute near University Community Hospital and $450,000 for a charter school at USF, among other gifts.

Rierson, the USF fundraiser, recalls Patel asking him: When are you going to ask me for money?

Before USF could solicit him, Patel pledged funds for medical school scholarships. "I don't have time for you guys to ask me for money," Rierson recalled Patel saying.

Around campus, Rierson has turned Patel's name into a verb - "We need to Patel that," meaning USF should kick it in high gear.

Other universities had approached Patel, a USF trustee, about donating to causes related to India, he said. But Patel said he wanted to think bigger.

Having lived on three continents, Patel calls himself a global citizen. Born in Zambia under apartheid, Patel studied medicine in India under a British system, and later built a small HMO in Tampa into a $1-billion business.

He met his wife, Pallavi, while both were studying medicine in India in the 1960s.

He said he sees the world growing smaller and thinks that to thrive, people must find solutions across national boundaries. "The world is shrinking very fast," Patel said. "And we want to be on the edge and ahead."

Patel had been impressed by the work of USF's existing Globalization Center. When it paid for New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman to speak on campus, he told Rierson: "This is what we need. This level of debate about international issues."

As the idea grew, Patel flew with Rierson, Genshaft and Khator on a USF donor's private plane to Houston to visit the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University. The trip was a turning point for Patel.

"Many world leaders always show up in New York or Washington," Patel said. "But we always get passed by. The primary reason is because we don't have a reason for anyone to visit us."

Patel saw what an institute could create - only he wants USF's center to go beyond just studying global issues and find solutions. The Globalization Center will eventually become part of the Patel Center.

"They wanted to make sure these academic ideas do not sit on a shelf," Khator said of the Patels.



KIRAN AND PALLAVI PATEL
Other donations from Kiran and Pallavi Patel:

$5-MILLION for the Dr. Pallavi Patel School for the Performing Arts at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center.

$3-MILLION for a new heart-research institute near University Community Hospital in Tampa.

$450,000 to help fund a new building for the University of South Florida charter school for at-risk children.

LAND for the Hindu Temple of Florida in Carrollwood.

Source: St. Petersburg Times and Tampa Tribune archives
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,994 Posts
can anyone tell me why its named usf while its in central fl.
 

·
Florida
Joined
·
1,295 Posts
This is probably not the right answer, but I would say anywhere from Tampa south is considered southern florida and north of Tampa is northern Florida. Plus UCF was already taken.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
571 Posts
I thought someone told me that the reason why it was called USF was because it was the southern most state college when it was built, but maybe someone told me a wrong fact.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
188 Posts
When the concept of a state university came into being for Tampa, our city was really the only city with substance this far south. Miami was still a small town and most of South Florida was a swampy wasteland. I beleive at the time Tampa was the largest city in the state and in the 1940's it was considered "South Florida" as there was nothing else south of here. No one knew Miami would become the metropolis it is today.

While USF was founded in the 1950's when Miami was starting to grow, the concept of the state university (USF) in Tampa started many years ahead of when it actaully got up and running.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,740 Posts
Not exactly an explanation but more than you ever wanted to know can be found here:
http://usfweb2.usf.edu/History/histpers.html


As far as Tampa610 is concerned, by 1940 Dade county was the most populous in the state and had a population almost as much as Hillsborough and Pinellas combined. When classes actually began in 1960 Dade county had more people than Hillsborough and Duval counties (#2 and 3) combined. To say that it was some sleepy backwater is a bit of a exageration, wouldn't you say?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,608 Posts
The University of South Florida is one of the great legacies of the watershed social and intellectual developments of mid-Twentieth Century America.
hahahahahahahhahahahahahaha

USF was recruiting superb scientists, creative artists, and cutting-edge scholars in everything from social sciences to literature.
Bahahahahahahahahahaha

USF established itself as a significant intellectual force.
:lol: :lol: hilarious

Couldn't this page of USF's history be alittle more subtle and professional? It's like an academic circle jerk.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
USF is named that way because of its historical location. Once upon a time everything south of the panhandle was 'south Florida' since the South Florida metro area, as we know it today, didn't exist yet. Secondly, the state had only two universities at the time, UF and FSU (the other schools were private). The state narrowed down locations to Tampa and Sarasota and built two schools, New College and USF. USF was named for being the only major state school in the southern part of the state (southern meaning south of Jax), in accordance with a new policy to name all new universities geographically, hence UWF, UNF, UCF, FGCU, FAU, etc. would come later. Today, with the name for Miami-FTL-W Palm being South Florida metro area, the school's name sounds absurd, but its still a good school and a major economic asset.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,994 Posts
brickell said:
Not exactly an explanation but more than you ever wanted to know can be found here:
http://usfweb2.usf.edu/History/histpers.html


As far as Tampa610 is concerned, by 1940 Dade county was the most populous in the state and had a population almost as much as Hillsborough and Pinellas combined. When classes actually began in 1960 Dade county had more people than Hillsborough and Duval counties (#2 and 3) combined. To say that it was some sleepy backwater is a bit of a exageration, wouldn't you say?
actually the only reason dade county was bigger than any other county in the states was because it went from the keys all the way to west palm beach/ interesting website there.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top