Harvard Says It Received Millions From Epstein

September 13, 2019

Harvard University president Lawrence S. Bacow announced Thursday that the university had received at least $9 million in donations from financier Jeffrey Epstein and his foundations. In a letter to Harvard's constituents, Bacow said he had ordered a review two weeks ago and that -- thus far -- it had revealed at least two gifts totaling $9 million between 1998 and 2007. Bacow said the donations had been designated for immediate use, not for endowments, and had largely been spent down, but that the university would donate $186,000 from one small endowment in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences to support victims of human trafficking and sexual assault.

"Epstein’s behavior, not just at Harvard, but elsewhere, raises significant questions about how institutions like ours review and vet donors," Bacow wrote. "I will be convening a group here at Harvard to review how we prevent these situations in the future. I also hope to engage our peer institutions to consider how we can collectively improve our processes. We can all learn from each other."

The revelations at Harvard came as L. Rafael Reif, the president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, another institution that has been ensnared in the controversy over Epstein's donations, said a review there had found that Reif had signed a letter acknowledging a 2012 gift to an MIT physicist, Seth Lloyd.

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