Considered Boston’s wealthiest woman in the late 19th century, Mary Hemenway used her family’s fortune from maritime trade to support many progressive causes, from education to historical preservation.
Today the Hemenway name graces the Founders Circle Wall of Recognition in our Campus Center. Her vision of “education for service” is expressed in Boston State’s motto, but that vision went further. She had a deep understanding of how philanthropy can transform the lives of people and institutions.
After her passing a eulogist spoke with appreciation of the “irresistible force” of her influence. “Happy for the world,” he said, “when wisdom, love, and wealth are the joint possession of one great soul.” Wisdom, Hemenway clearly believed, was needed for selecting causes worthy of financial investment; passion was needed for inspiring them through admiration and engagement; and wealth was needed for sustaining them with critical resources.
In choosing to invest in the University of Massachusetts Boston, you too, have demonstrated the power of wisdom, passion, and financial support. In viewing our video you will see that by wisely selecting us as a beneficiary of your charitable dollars you have offered a powerful vote of confidence in our pursuit of teaching, research, and service. In 2008, through your generosity, we raised nearly $17 million, $3.3 million over our goal for the year.
The stories in this report provide a small glimpse of the impact of your investments, while images from the university’s sailing program illustrate our early benefactor’s ideals. But most importantly, I want to assure you that the people and programs that have been sustained by your philanthropy are carrying on the kind of good work that Mary Hemenway so revered. Your philanthropic investment makes us confident that we can realize UMass Boston’s potential as Massachusetts’ great student-centered, urban public university.