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United World College in Montezuma gets $10 million ‘challenge’ gift

SANTA FE – Philanthropist Shelby M.C. Davis and his family, in honor of Davis’ 80th birthday earlier this month, have made a $10 million “challenge grant” to United World College-USA in Montezuma.

The grant asks that the school raise $2 million a year, beginning June 1, for each of the next five years.

If successful, the grant/fundraising plan would mean $20 million for the international baccalaureate school located east of Las Vegas, N.M.


United World College-USA in Montezuma has received a $10 million challenge grant (Marla Brose/Albuquerque Journal)

“This extraordinary gift comes at an opportune time for UWC-USA,” said school president Victoria J. Mora, in a news release. “UWC’s unique program of education, in which young people come from across the globe to learn and live together, is needed more than ever. This gift allows us to be creative in our thinking as we plan for the school’s future.

“As part of a worldwide educational movement, and the only campus in the United States, we will leverage this gift to lead the way in making education a force for peace in a complex and multi-cultural world.”

The World College in Montezuma was founded in 1982 on a 200-acre campus. It is a residential boarding school for 235 students, age 16 to 19, from all over the world, including New Mexico.

Since 1998, Davis – founder of Davis Advisors, a mutual fund management company with more than $60 billion under management – has donated to all 16 United World College schools around the world.

“We extend our heartfelt thanks to his family and to Shelby – a ‘dreamer who does’ – for their vision, commitment, and example,” said Mora.

Davis philanthropy has donated more than $45 million to United World College scholarship program that has supported more than 6,000 students on more than 91 American college and university campuses.


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