Scott Galloway, MBA 92, donates $4.4M for fellowships for students from immigrant families

Scott Galloway, MBA 92, donates $4.4 million for scholarships

Professor of Marketing and entrepreneur Scott Galloway has made a $4.4 million gift to UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business to fund fellowships for undergraduate and graduate business students.

His gift—the second-largest ever from an MBA alum—will create the Galloway Fellows Fund, aimed at assisting generations of high-achieving business students at Berkeley-Haas who come from immigrant families.

Galloway, MBA 92, said, “As the son of a single immigrant mother, the big hand of government lifted me up. I want to ensure the hand remains extended for the next generation of aspiring business leaders who come from immigrant families.”

“I was a remarkably unremarkable kid,” he said. “Cal made what probably seemed, at the time, like an irrational bet on me. It changed my life.”

The gift was made possible through the sale of one of Galloway’s companies. In 2009, Galloway founded L2, Inc., to benchmark brands’ digital competence. Earlier this year, after L2 was sold to technology research firm Gartner, Galloway fulfilled his Founder’s Pledge, a nonbinding commitment by UC Berkeley entrepreneurs to give back to Berkeley when they attain success. To date, some 265 founders have signed.

“I felt blessed.”

The first four students to receive $50,000 Galloway Fellowships, all first-year MBA students, are Josue Chavarin, Kira Mikityanskaya, Kevin Phan, and Jorge Tellez.

Chavarin, the son of immigrant farm workers who grew up in Salinas, Ca., said he felt blessed when he learned about the new fellowship and decided to apply.

“I never would have thought that a fellowship (created) to empower and acknowledge children of immigrants would be available to me—especially in the political climate we’re in,” said Chavarin, who graduated from UC Berkeley in 2011 with a degree in political science with minors in Spanish literature and education. “Mr. Galloway is a real leader in taking this stance and standing up for immigrants.”

A life-changing gift

Berkeley-Haas Dean Rich Lyons said that Galloway’s gift will be life changing for many students. “Scott’s gift is an outstanding display of generosity that comes at a particularly difficult time for so many immigrant families,” Lyons said. “Scott understands personally what a public university education can do to change the course of students’ lives—and inspire them, in turn, to pay it forward to others.”

Galloway is currently a professor of marketing at New York University’s Stern School of Business and Chairman of L2. He co-founded Prophet Brand Strategy with classmate Ian Chaplin, MBA 92, and helped pioneer the rise of e-commerce when he co-founded Red Envelope, an online specialty gift retailer, in 1997.

“This is a tip of the hat to the generosity and vision of California taxpayers and the UC Regents, respectively,” Galloway said. “I also hope this sends a signal to current and future immigrants that most Americans remember where we came from, and welcome them to the land of opportunity.” Professor Galloway has also announced gifts to UCLA and NYU.