Robert (Bob) Weissman ’64, H’94, P’87 ’90 and his wife, Jan Weissman P’87 ’90, have made a $36.3 million gift to Babson College, enabling construction to begin on a new collaborative environment in the center of campus where students, faculty, staff, and their ideas will intertwine.
“We are all humbled, inspired, and deeply grateful for the Weissmans’ extraordinary and unmatched generosity and commitment to Babson College,” said President
Kerry Healey. “Bob and Jan’s remarkable support is a testament to their deep engagement with our mission: to prepare entrepreneurial leaders who create great economic and social value everywhere. Their guidance and support has benefited every aspect of the Babson community—our students, alumni, faculty, and the campus experience—and will continue to drive excellence at Babson for generations to come.”
The Gift: A Vision for Babson’s Future
As Babson prepares to celebrate its Centennial and looks toward its next 100 years, the College remains focused on educating entrepreneurs whose work will add economic and social value to communities around the world. Creating environments beyond the classroom where students, faculty, and staff can work collaboratively has become increasingly important.
While the Weissmans’ gift is unrestricted, a portion of it will be used to enable construction to begin on a new 10,000-square-foot structure in the heart of Babson’s campus. This beautiful, light-filled space will include a four-season garden for use by students and will serve as the gateway to Horn Library, making it much more accessible. Within the new structure will be group study areas and informal gathering spaces, a café, and a new home for the Stephen D. Cutler Center for Investments and Finance. This new construction will also establish centralized locations for Babson’s academic and extracurricular resource centers, create a state-of-the-art classroom, and provide additional faculty and staff offices.
“Babson plays a vital role in advancing the work of family businesses, of businesses led by women, of businesses that promote the common good for all people, and of entrepreneurs of all kinds,” said Robert Weissman. “Our entire family feels very fortunate that we are able to help sustain Babson’s mission around the world and to do so during our lifetimes so that we can see the impact our philanthropy is having now and in the months and years ahead.”
The Weissmans’ Legacy of Support
Robert and Jan Weissman are among Babson’s most generous and committed philanthropists. Their new gift brings their lifetime support of Babson to a record $100 million.
“Bob and Jan’s love for and support of Babson has no boundaries,” said
Joseph L. Winn MBA’74, P’15, Chair of the Babson College Board of Trustees. “Bob’s wise counsel during his time on the Babson Board of Trustees, coupled with his and Jan’s philanthropic commitments, will have an everlasting impact on the work of our faculty and the educational experiences of our students.”
In 2008, the Weissmans established the Weissman Scholarship program that currently supports 19 students at the College. To date, 13 Weissman Scholars have graduated from Babson and begun careers at technology startups, charter schools, nonprofit organizations, international automotive companies, and accounting corporations.
The Weissmans have also given generously to support the work of faculty through the establishment of an endowed professorship. Earlier this year, Professor
Richard Cleary was appointed the Robert E. Weissman ’64, H’94, P’87 ’90 and Janet Weissman P’87 ’90 Professor in Business Analytics.
Preparing for Babson’s Second Century
The Weissmans’ gift will help establish the foundation for a historic effort to drive the College’s vision into the future by securing critically needed additional resources through philanthropy.
“We are so grateful for Bob and Jan’s incredible investment in Babson’s future,” said
Marla M. Capozzi MBA’96, Chair-elect of the Babson College Board of Trustees. “As we near Babson’s 100th year, we are looking toward the College’s second century and the critical role entrepreneurs of all kinds will play in this future. It is only through the generosity of Babson community members like the Weissmans that we are able to continue to offer new innovations combined with the very best in business education to prepare our students to become the necessary change-makers of tomorrow.”
In 2019, Babson College will mark its Centennial and celebrate 100 years as a leader in entrepreneurship education. Babson is preparing entrepreneurs of all kinds to lead in a new way, creating social and economic value simultaneously, and, in doing so, transforming lives, businesses, and communities for the better. By offering a transformative experience, fostering intentional diversity, and preparing graduates to apply Entrepreneurial Thought & Action® in all settings—from corporations to startups to NGOs—our graduates will be ready to lead and make a difference in our rapidly changing world.
The College’s Centennial strategy calls for deepening Babson’s expertise and impact in three areas: strengthening family enterprises, advancing women-led entrepreneurship, and driving social impact. Each of these priorities is a historic strength for the College and offers an opportunity for Babson to make an outsized contribution to solving some of the world’s most pressing problems.
About the Weissman Family
The Weissman family has deep ties to Babson. Married for more than 57 years, Robert and Janet Weissman have two sons that hold Babson degrees (Michael D. Weissman ’87, P’20, and Christopher J. Weissman MBA’90), as does one of their daughters-in-law (Wendy Munroe Weissman ’88, P’20). One of their grandsons is currently attending Babson.
Robert Weissman is a co-founder of Cognizant Technology Solutions, an information-consulting company that has grown to 250,000 employees and sales of more than $14 billion. During the 1970s, he was a pioneer in the cable television transmission industry and later in the nascent computer-time-sharing industry. In 1980, he was named Executive Vice President of Dun & Bradstreet Corporation, and, in 1984, he was named President and COO of the company. Ultimately, he spent 17 years with Dun & Bradstreet, eventually becoming Chairman and CEO in 1994.
About Babson College
Babson College is the educator, convener, and thought leader for
Entrepreneurship of All Kinds®. The
top-ranked college for entrepreneurship education, Babson is a dynamic living and learning laboratory where students, faculty, and staff work together to address the real-world problems of business and society. We prepare the entrepreneurial leaders our world needs most: those with strong functional knowledge and the skills and vision to navigate change, accommodate ambiguity, surmount complexity, motivate teams in a common purpose to make a difference in the world, and have an impact on organizations of all sizes and types. As we have for nearly a half-century, Babson continues to advance
Entrepreneurial Thought & Action® as the most positive force on the planet for generating sustainable economic and social value.