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Cass Business School is set to receive over half a million dollars from the Coca-Cola Foundation to provide undergraduate scholarships.
The global charitable arm of Coca-Cola, the world’s largest soft drink company by revenues, is donating $528,000 to finance eight students on the City-based school’s business and finance degrees for each of the next three years. Four UK and four international students enrolling on Cass undergraduate programmes this September will be awarded full tuition fees, plus a living allowance.
“Given that the costs of studying are prohibitive for many, this is certainly going to be a strong incentive for people to apply to us,” says Paola Barbarino, director of development and external relations at Cass. She hopes that the new merit-based scholarships will become a permanent fixture among the school’s awards beyond 2016.
Cass is the alma mater of Muhtar Kent, chairman and chief executive of Coca-Cola, who completed his MBA in 1977. He told the FT earlier this year that his MBA studies in London “have proven to be truly invaluable” to his business career. Ms Barbarino acknowledges that Mr Kent’s personal connection with the school must have helped deliver this gift.
The foundation is an established supporter of business education at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia - home to Coca-Cola’s headquarters. In 2008, the foundation pledged $2m to financial aid for undergraduate business and nursing students over the five years to 2013.
Emory’s Goizueta Business School is named after one of Mr Kent’s predecessors, Roberto Goizueta, who led the US firm’s global expansion as chairman and chief executive from 1980 until 1997. His estate donated $20m to the Goizueta school in 1998 following his death the previous year.