$5 million gift to Rowan business school to fund scholarships

The new Rohrer College of Business building opened in January. Here, Dean Sue Lehrman shows off one of the new classrooms.

Rowan University’s business college will receive $5 million for honors scholarships and retention initiatives — a gift from the William G. Rohrer Charitable Foundation — university president Ali Houshmand announced Wednesday.

The gift will create a permanent endowment for the Rohrer College of Business to be used to recruit and graduate honors business students, according to a statement issued by Rowan.

“One of our primary responsibilities as a public research university is to help drive the economy of the region by developing a talented stream of future business leaders,” said Houshmand. “This generous gift will help us stem the tide of students going out of state for business education, many of whom do not return.”

The business college will work with the Thomas N. Bantivoglio Honors Concentration in the Honors College.

In January, a new $63.2 million academic hall was opened at the Glassboro campus to serve the business college, which has 2,000 students. Besides offering bachelor’s degrees in accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, management, human resources management, and other subjects, the college has a graduate MBA program.

“My father had a passion for education and for helping fellow business people succeed,” Linda M. Rohrer, a trustee of the William G. Rohrer Charitable Foundation, said in a statement.  She said the endowment would be used to keep the college competitive.

The Rohrer College of Business is named for Rohrer’s father, William G. Rohrer, a businessman and community leader who died in 1989. The gift is the foundation’s latest commitment to the college, bringing its total commitment to $19 million.

R.J. Tallarida Jr., a vice president for university advancement, said the funds will be used for a yet undetermined number of scholarships as well as for support and retention programs. “This is a fantastic shot in the arm for Rowan,” he said.

“The extraordinary generosity of the William G. Rohrer Charitable Foundation has been the catalyst for our college’s amazing transformation,” Rohrer College of Business dean Sue Lehrman said in the statement.  “We are grateful for the foundation’s continued investment in the future of business education at Rowan.”