West Virginia University alumnus Stuart Robbins and his wife, Joyce, have made a $1 million gift to establish the first chair in the Department of History in WVU s Eberly College of Arts and Sciences.

“This gift is a way for me to give back to West VirginiaUniversity and ensure that students who want to pursue a degree in history receive as excellent an education as I did,”said Robbins, a Parkersburg native.”WVU has a very special place in my heart. As a young freshman from Parkersburg, I was welcomed with open arms. WVU helped me learn a lot about leadership, allowed me to develop an appreciation for learning that helped me excel in my professional and personal life and gave me lifelong friends.

“West Virginia University is being recognized as an institution where greatness is learned. And greatness is built through a series of individually transforming moments. WVU has been building greatness by transforming the lives of its students and, in the process, has gradually transformed itself into a university with a national and global reputation for excellence. As one who had the good fortune to travel throughout this great country and around the world for his business, I can assure you that WVU provides a foundation competitive with anyone.”

The Robbinsendowed fund will support:

-         the Stuart and Joyce Robbins Chair in History

-         the Stuart and Joyce Robbins Fellows

-        a library endowment for history materials

The Robbins Chair will be held by a nationally recognized scholar who will attract students, other scholars and grant support for the department. Through the Robbins Fellows, the department will be able to attract and retain the top history graduate students, who will work closely with the Robbins Chair holder. Also, the Robbins recognize the importance of library research and teaching materials to such a scholar and the students he or she will mentor. Therefore, a portion of the fund will be devoted to strengthening the WVU Library.

Eberly College Dean M. Duane Nellis said,”Stuart and Joyce Robbins have been strong, caring and involved supporters of the EberlyCollege and our Department of History for many years. This generous gift is an extraordinary expression of their commitment toward ensuring that our history program continues to build toward greatness.”

The endowment was created through the WVU Foundation in conjunction with Building Greatness Campaign: West Virginia University . The campaign is a $250 million fundraising effort being conducted by the Foundation on behalf of the University. Robbins, who is serving as vice chair of the Building Greatness National Campaign Committee, added,”By supporting this campaign to whatever extent possible, everyone who cares about the future of WVU can help build thisUniversity into an even greater institution and an even greater source of pride.”

Robbins is the retired managing director of Global Equities for Donaldson, Lufkin&Jenrette, a leading Wall Street investment firm where he was also member of the board of directors and chaired both DLJ International (Equities) and Autranet Inc. He is a member of the WVU Foundation board of directors and chairs its Investment Committee. He also serves on the Eberly College Advisory Board.

A 1965 Arts&Sciences graduate, Robbins majored in history and minored in political science. He also did graduate work in law at New York University and took advanced business courses at the University of Pittsburgh and Pace University.

Mrs. Robbins is a 1967 graduate of California State University of Pennsylvania and received a masters degree in special education from the University of Pittsburgh in 1970. In 1980 she earned a masters degree in business from Pace University and received her CPA designation.

The WVU Foundation, a private non-profit organization, generates, receives and administers private gifts from individuals and organizations for the benefit of West Virginia University.