May 6, 2005
Tufts University officially changed the name of its veterinary school
yesterday to honor two of its benefactors, William S. and Joyce M. Cummings,
and their foundation, the Cummings Foundation Inc.
was held to mark changing the name of the Route 30 campus from Tufts University
School of Veterinary Medicine to the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
at Tufts University. Mr. Cummings, a Tufts alumnus who graduated in 1958,
is an entrepreneur and philanthropist.
27 years ago, the only graduated-level veterinary school in New England
has -- until now - been known only as the Tufts University School of Veterinary
Medicine. In September, the Woburn-based Cummings Foundation committed
$50 million to the school, prompting the name change. The donation will
support many of the university's educational, research and clinical efforts,
provide matching funds to support major research proposals and finance
capital improvements, said Lawrence S. Bacow, president of Tufts University.
is really a historic day, both for the university and for veterinary education,"
Mr. Bacow said.
in 1986, the Cummings Foundation is one of the largest charitable organizations
in the state.
said he was inspired to make the gift by his impressions of the way the
university is growing and of the Tufts leadership. Mr. Cummings added
he hopes the Cummings Foundation gift serves as a model of support, and
he encourages other entities to similarly support universities.
is immensely gratifying to be part of an institution like Tufts."
Mr. Cummings said.
told the crowd that an entrepreneurial leader must have the ability to
take an innovative vision and cultivate it through actualization.
was the way the veterinary school was founded: as a vision by a Tufts
University president who believed that "institutions survive by seizing
than 30 years ago, former Tufts President Jean Mayer revealed in his inaugural
address --- to the surprise of many --- that he had made the creation
of a veterinary school one of his priorities, Mr. Cummings said.
Mayer was concerned that great things were afloat in the biomedical field
and intuited that they would have an effect on veterinary science,"
he said. "That vision became a reality and then some."
commitment is among the largest ever made to a veterinary school in the
United States or to a college or university in the state, Mr. Bacow said.
In addition, this is the first veterinary school to take the name of one
of its benefactors, said Dr. Philip C. Kosch, dean of the Cummings School
of Veterinary Medicine.
Cummingses' gift represents a vote of confidence in Tufts' visionary leaders
who have created a world-class veterinary institution that advances animal,
human and public health," Dr. Kosch said. "We cannot thank the
Cummings Foundation enough for its trust in us. We now have the distinction
of being the first veterinary school in the nation to assume the name
of a generous donor."
who is president of the Cummings Foundation, is more than just a financial
donor. He has donated a considerable amount of time to the school as an
overseer of the Tufts Medical School and a trustee of the university,
and through the endowment for the Cummings Family Chair in Entrepreneurship
and Business Economics.
has an extensive career that reaches from politics to real estate development,
and from assisted living to newspaper publishing. The founder of Cummings
Properties LLC, one of the largest real estate and development firms in
Massachusetts, he also founded and serves as president of the assisted
living facilities New Horizons at Choate in Woburn and New Horizons at
publisher of three community newspapers, he was also an elected member
and chairman of the Winchester Planning Board, and the director of several
institutions, including the Winchester Country Club, Winchester Hospital
and a Woburn bank, as well as the director of the Woburn Boys and Girls
Club for 25 years.
He has been honored with the Real Estate Entrepreneur of the Year for New England from Ernst & Young in 1998, and was a recipient of the Tufts University Distinguished Service Award.