Veterinary School Changes Name
The Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts is named for benefactor William S. Cummings, who pledged $50 million to the school lastfall.
No. Grafton, Mass. [05.06.05] Tufts University celebrated the generosity of Cummings Foundation, Inc., and its chief benefactors William S. and Joyce M. Cummings, yesterday by changing the name of its veterinary school to Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. Members of the Tufts community, representatives from Cummings Foundation, and local officials were in attendance at a ceremony unveiling the new name at the veterinary school’s campus in North Grafton, Massachusetts.
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Last September,Tufts officials announced that Cummings Foundation had committed to investing $50 million in the newly-renamed Cummings Schoolof Veterinary Medicine, which is the only graduate veterinary institution in New England. The commitment ranks among the largest ever made to a veterinary school in the United States or to a Massachusetts college or university. Tufts will use the funds to sustain its global reputation for excellence in veterinary medicine. The Cummings pledge will be used to enhance the educational and clinical missions of the school, provide matching funds to support major research proposals, and finance critical capital improvements.
In his remarks at the ceremony, Tufts University President Lawrence S. Bacow focused on the close connection forged between the veterinary school and the Cummings family. “Our veterinary school now proudly bears a name synonymous with visionary leadership in business, education, and philanthropy,” Bacow said. “We are enormously grateful to Cummings Foundation and to Bill and Joyce Cummings for their confidence in the faculty, staff and students who are dedicated to the humane treatment of animals, the advancement of new knowledge, and excellence in higher education.”
William S. Cummings, president of Cummings Foundation, has long been a valued contributor to his alma mater, through his service as an Overseer of Tufts Medical School, as a Trustee of the University, and through the endowment of the Cummings Family Chair in Entrepreneurship and Business Economics. In his remarks, Bill Cummings emphasized the important role that Cummings School fulfills both locally and globally. “I am very proud of our close association with Tufts University, and in particular, the newly-renamed Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine,” Cummings said. “The Cummings School’s role in fighting human communicable diseases, as well as those in animals, and in combating world famine cannotbe overstated. It is also the only source of new veterinarians in New England, which is extremely important to the economy of the entire region.”
“The Cummings gift represents a vote of confidence in Tufts’ visionary leaders who have created a world class veterinary institution that advances animal, human and public health,” said Cummings Veterinary School Dean Philip C. Kosch, DVM. “We cannot thank Cummings Foundation enough for its trust in us. We now havethe distinction of being the first veterinary school in the nationto assume the name of a generous donor, due to a magnificent gift that will provide greater financial resources to what is already a world class institution.”
In addition to serving as the president of Cummings Foundation, William Cummings is the founder of Cummings Properties, LLC, which is one of the largest real estate development and management firms in Massachusetts. Mr. Cummings also founded and currently serves as president of two assisted living facilities, New Horizons at Choate and New Horizons at Marlborough, and was the founding publisher of threecommunity newspapers. He served as an elected member and chairof the Winchester Planning Board, and as a director of Winchester Country Club, Winchester Hospital and a Woburn bank. Additionally, he has served for 25 years as a director of the Woburn Boys and Girls Club. He was the recipient of the Tufts University Distinguished Service Award, the highest award the University gives to an alumnus. In 1998, he was named Real Estate Entrepreneur of the Year for New England by Ernst & Young.
Clinicians and scientists at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine work tirelessly to improve animal, human and ecosystem health nationally and around the globe. Faculty at the school’s three Grafton, Mass., hospitals treat more than 28,000 animals per year, and are developing innovative technologies to diagnose and treat diseases in companion animals, agricultural species, and wildlife. They have pioneered discoveries in diagnostic imaging, renal dialysis, orthopedics, pulmonary diagnostics, critical care, and new chemotherapies. In addition, Tufts scientists helped to eradicate cattle disease in Africa and Asia and have been integrally involved in famine relief programs there. They are also investigating infectious diseases that threaten immuno-compromised people.
The newly-renamed Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts is a proven leader in areas such as student teaching, clinical services and research. National matching program data ranks the school first out of 28 in the number of graduates matched for internships and residencies over the last three years. The school’s Foster Hospital for Small Animals ranks first among U.S. veterinary schools in the number of hospitalized patients and fourth in the number of patient visits. Nationally, on a per capita basis, the veterinary school faculty ranks first in research funding from the National Institutes of Health and fourth in total sponsored research funding.
The school receives annual operating support from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, producing one of the most successful public/private higher education partnerships in the nation. The school also pursues alliances and partnerships with industry, other universities, government laboratories and non-governmental organizations to achieve a multi-disciplinary team approach to scientific inquiry. The Cummings gift will complement the state funding to enable the school to continue its traditionof providing one of the finest veterinary educations in the world.