Master of St Catharine’s announces transformative gift

The Master, Professor Sir Mark Welland, is delighted to announce a donation to the College of £25 million, as part of a £100 million gift to Cambridge University, from alumnus David Harding (1979, Natural Sciences) and his wife, Claudia Harding. This donation, which will provide vital funding for its student support initiatives, gives a major boost to the College’s recently launched strategic plan and resultant fundraising campaign, ‘Our College, Our Future’. This campaign puts students at the heart of its plans and it is therefore particularly fitting that this extraordinary gift will be used to support students at St Catharine’s.

Of their decision to support Collegiate Cambridge with this gift, David said: “Claudia and I are very happy to make this gift to Cambridge to help to attract future generations of the world’s outstanding students to research and study there. Cambridge and other British centres of learning have down the ages contributed greatly to improvements in the human condition and can continue in future to address humanity’s great challenges.”

Dr Miranda Griffin, St Catharine’s College Senior Tutor, said: “This unprecedented gift will transform our ability to support our best and brightest students. Fully funded PhD scholarships will attract excellent doctoral students across all disciplines. Undergraduates will also benefit from the wider purposes of the donation providing support when and where it is most needed, further strengthening our commitment to promote access and diversity.

Professor Stephen J Toope, Vice-Chancellor of the University, said the £100 million donation would have a significant impact across the University as a whole. “This extraordinarily generous gift from David and Claudia Harding will be invaluable in sustaining Cambridge’s place among the world’s leading universities and will help to transform our offer to students. We want to attract, support and fund the most talented students we can find from all parts of the UK and the world.”

Speaking of the gift, Sir Mark said: “The admirable philanthropy of David and Claudia Harding will have a tremendous and permanent impact on St Catharine’s as well as the University as a whole. We could not be more honoured to receive this gift.”

We look forward to keeping you updated on the impact of this donation and further developments with the ‘Our College, Our Future’ campaign. You can read the University’s full press release about this gift here.