BNY Mellon Donates $1 Million to Develop CSR Programs at University of Pittsburgh

The University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning in Oakland

Back in August I wrote an article wondering if we were Greenwashing our MBAs.  Elaine Cohen, whose work inspired the article, wrote an astute response to my post stating, “The real change will come when businesses demand that MBA grads have sustainability knowledge as part of their basic education – it has to be a pull from biz rather than a push from young activists or intelligent academics.”  Are we seeing the tide shift?  I was elated to see that BNY Mellon was donating $1 million for Corporate Social Responsibility Programs and Education at the University of Pittsburgh.  Will this trend continue where companies are asking MBA programs to develop skills in CSR, SRI and sustainability?

According to the CSRwire press release, BNY Mellon’s $1 million grant will fund student fellowships, faculty research fellowships, and annual CSR forums and case-study competitions  through the University’s David Berg Center for Ethics and Leadership, part of the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and College of Business Administration.  CSRwire quotes Vincent V. Sands, chairman of BNY Mellon of Pennsylvania, as saying:  “Our commitment to the University of Pittsburgh will support groundbreaking research and help students integrate socially responsible principles into their leadership training. By developing a keen understanding of corporate social responsibility, they will be better prepared for the leadership opportunities of tomorrow.”

Although it is only one business-lead, CSR-focused academic partnership, I hope others will follow BNY Mellon’s lead and encourage MBA Programs to focus on CSR, sustainability and responsible leadership.

Do you know of any other business-academic partnerships in the CSR, SRI or sustainability fields?  Post them here in comments!  I would love to find out more.

Image Credit:  Rastoder via Flickr under CC license.

Written by Emily DeMasi

Emily McKinin DeMasi is a 2011 MBA/ MA Public Policy candidate and Peace Corps Fellow at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA. Her thesis work concerns Corporate Social Responsibility in the United States. She also works as a Research Fellow at Bridgeway Capital, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) in downtown Pittsburgh. Emily has worked as an Associate in a Private Equity Placement Firm in NY and as a Water and Sanitation Volunteer in Ivory Coast, West Africa. She hopes to combine her business background with her passion for development and inspire others in the fields of Sustainability and CSR.


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