Campus News

BB&T gift creates support fund for study of capitalism, market economies

BB&T Corp., the nation’s 10th largest financial holding company, has pledged to give $1.5 million over 10 years to UGA’s Terry College of Business to expand teaching and research into the foundations of capitalism and free market economies.

The gift will establish the BB&T Support Fund for the Study of Capitalism and Market Economies in the department of banking and finance.

About half of BB&T’s $150,000 annual contribution will enable the college to develop new coursework to expose undergraduate students to the historical foundations of capitalism, how it’s viewed in contemporary society and its future prospects. The remaining funds will provide faculty support for research on capital markets, market competition, government-controlled incentives and disincentives for productivity, and comparative studies of economic systems.

“As the Terry College of Business approaches the centennial of its founding in 1912, it is fitting that we should take this opportunity to look more closely at the historical tenets of capitalism and consider its changing role in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent global market,” said Dean Robert T. Sumichrast. “Thanks to BB&T’s support, we expect to develop in our students a deeper historical and philosophical understanding of capitalism and its relation to economic well-being.”

Each student admitted to the Terry College will receive a copy of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged as well as writings by other classic economists and philosophers, including Milton Friedman, Friedrich von Hayek, John Keynes, Karl Marx, Joseph Schumpeter and Adam Smith.

In support of research, the Terry College will select BB&T Scholars among faculty who are actively engaged in research pertaining to market competition, corporate governance, capital markets and government agencies that monitor and intervene in the economy. The faculty who are named BB&T Scholars will be chosen on a competitive basis, and they will hold the appointments for a three-year period.