School of Oriental and African Studies gets funding from Chicago-based foundation

One of the biggest donations recorded in higher education in the United Kingdom has been given to the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, to advance the study and preservation of Buddhist and Hindu art in Southeast Asia.

The donation of £ 20 million by the Chicago-based Alphawood Foundation will amount to 28 per cent of the 2012-13 turnover of SOAS, a press release from SOAS says. The Alphawood’s donation, which its founder Fred Eychaner has called “transformative” for the institution, will provide funding for over 80 scholarships, three fully endowed academic positions, and SOAS’ expansion plans in central London.

Mr. Eychaner was a participant in the School’s famous postgraduate diploma in Asian Art in 2009.

The new posts, says the release, will strengthen the Department of the History of Art and Archaeology and the Postgraduate Diploma in Asian Art within SOAS’s recently launched School of Arts.