Washington: An Indian-American doctor couple, Drs. Kiran C. and Pallavi Patel, have donated $12 million to the University of South Florida in a new endowment aimed at creating the Patel College of Global Sustainability.
The endowment would expand on nearly a decade of world-leading applied research to advance sustainability around the globe and improve the lives of the world's most vulnerable people, according to the Tampa, Florida based university.
Pending approval from university panels, the new college will elevate the work of the Patel School of Global Sustainability to a new level that allows it to build on its far-reaching portfolio of projects focused on improved urban systems, water and transportation.
The gift is the Patels' latest contribution to the ongoing USF: Unstoppable fundraising campaign.
The new endowment brings the Patel's contributions to USF to $25,798,329 through a series of donations and state matching funds in which the Patels have focused attention on sustainable global development and health care.
Past giving has supported the Dr. Kiran C Patel Endowment Fund; the construction of the Patel Centre for Global Solutions; the Dr. Kiran Patel Centre for Global Solutions Operating Fund and USF Health.
Since 2010, the Patel School of Global Sustainability has served as a graduate-level programme in the education of new engineers, entrepreneurs and environmental managers to lead sustainability projects around the world.
"The Earth is God's gift to humanity and we believe that the current generation must ensure that while meeting our present needs, we do not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their needs," the Patels said in a joint statement.
USF President Judy Genshaft commended the Patels for their leadership and influence in helping shape USF, now a Top 50 research university, with an international perspective that has become a hallmark of its applied research programmes.
Born in India, Pallavi Patel and the Zambia-born Kiran Patel first met while studying medicine in Ahmedabad, India. Both doctors received their advanced specialisations in New York at Columbia University; he in cardiology, and she in paediatrics.
As the successful founders of a physician-owned and run managed care plan, the Patels have earned a reputation for generosity for developing and funding a variety of programmes in health, education, arts and culture.