UPenn Loses Another Major Donor over Antisemitism on Campus

UPenn Campus
Eugene Kim/ Flickr

The fallout over the University of Pennsylvania’s (UPenn) response to antisemitism on campus in the wake of the Hamas terrorist attack on Israel continued this week when it lost yet another major donor.

David Magerman, who helped build the trading systems of Renaissance Technologies, scolded UPenn President Elizabeth Magill and Chair of the Board of Trustees Scott Bok for hosting Palestine Writes Literature last month and for a poor response to the Hamas terror attack in Israel, which left 1,200 people (mostly civilians) dead.

“People who care about morality and ethics should just leave institutions that show they don’t,” Magerman told Bloomberg in a phone interview on Tuesday, adding that he is “deeply ashamed” of his association with the university while planning to cease donations.

Magerman jumping ship comes after UPenn lost a major donor and a board member due to antisemitism on campus. Jon Huntsman, former U.S. ambassador and a major donor to the university, said he would no longer be funding the school, citing its silence in the face of the horrific terrorist attack.

“The University’s silence in the face of reprehensible and historic Hamas evil against the people of Israel (when the only response should be outright condemnation) is a new low. Silence is antisemitism, and antisemitism is hate, the very thing higher ed was built to obviate,” Huntsman said in a letter obtained by the Daily Pennsylvanian.

“Consequently, Huntsman Foundation will close its checkbook on all future giving to Penn — something that has been a source of enormous pride for now three generations of graduates. My siblings join me in this rebuke,” he added.

After a three-hour emergency meeting, Vahan Gureghian resigned from UPenn’s board of trustees for the same reason.

“Just as at so many other elite academic institutions, the Penn community has been failed by an embrace of antisemitism, a failure to stand for justice and complete negligence in the defense of our students’ wellbeing,” Gureghian said in his resignation letter.

UPenn President Liz Magill said that the university does not support antisemitism.

“The University did not, and emphatically does not, endorse these speakers or their views. While we did communicate, we should have moved faster to share our position strongly and more broadly with the Penn community,” Magill said.

“I stand, and Penn stands, emphatically against antisemitism. We have a moral responsibility—as an academic institution and a campus community—to combat antisemitism and to educate our community to recognize and reject hate,” she added.

Scott Bok said in a Daily Pennsylvanian column Monday that Penn “strongly condemns antisemitism in all forms and everywhere.”

“The diversity of views and perspectives means there will be disagreements and not everyone will be satisfied — particularly in fast-moving, horrifically tragic situations where emotions are understandably raw and inflamed,” he wrote.

Editor’s Note: This story was updated to reflect a revised number on the death toll from the October 7 Hamas attack in Israel. The Israeli government estimate of 1,400 was revised to around 1,200, according to Reuters.

Paul Roland Bois joined Breitbart News in 2021. He also directed the award-winning feature film, EXEMPLUM, which can be viewed for FREE on YouTube or Tubi. A high-quality, ad-free stream can also be purchased on Google Play or Vimeo on Demand. Follow him on Twitter @prolandfilms or Instagram @prolandfilms.


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