At the official dedication of the $140 million Wharton building named in his honor, Jon Huntsman spoke Friday afternoon about the message he hopes students take away from his generosity and the education he hopes they will receive.
"There will be no better business education, but this must be tempered with ethics," Huntsman proclaimed. "Corporate and personal greed will never replace our outreach to underprivileged communities."
Huntsman's remarks were the high point of a weekend which celebrated his enormous donation to the building that now dominates the Walnut Street skyline.
Friday morning, a private ceremony was held in his honor and was attended by Vice President Dick Cheney and Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints President Gordon Hinckley, among others.
In addition to other private events held throughout the day, Friday evening's ceremony was attended by about 200 people, including a handful of interested students and featured remarks from University President Judith Rodin and Provost Robert Barchi.
Although the building has been open since August, Friday marked the first time Huntsman had addressed the University community about his investment in the Wharton School.
"May those who study herein go on to serve mankind with love," he said. "No exercise is better for the human heart than reaching down and lifting another up."
The festivities continued Saturday with an alumni breakfast, panel discussions on careers in business and a lecture from noted Finance Professor Jeremy Siegel on the future of the stock market.
Wharton Dean Patrick Harker said the weekend was a memorable event not just for Wharton, but for the Penn community as a whole.
"There are those rare days in your life like today," Harker said after Friday evening's ceremony. He added he believes Huntsman "is absolutely a Wharton and Penn hero. Every day, he lives what we try to teach our students."
Flanked by family members, Huntsman said after giving his speech on Friday that he was "humbled" by the events of the weekend.
"I think it was extremely well-planned by the Wharton administration," he said. "It was quite an emotional experience."
Huntsman also reiterated his desire to pass on his message of "outreach and love for one another" to students who are currently following in his footsteps.
"This may sound old-fashioned, but I hope that our courses are always centered at the end of the day around those two ideas," he said.Comments powered by Disqus
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