The department of Chemistry at the University of York will benefit from a £1 million gift from their former pupil Dr Anthony H Wild.
The generous donation will principally go towards a new teaching facility to benefit future generations of York chemistry students. It will also focus on supporting influential international research and infrastructure projects in the specialised fields of atmospheric chemistry and chemical and structural biology. Moreover, Dr Wild will give a further £1.37 million, against funds raised by the Department of Chemistry and the university, over a period of the next five years.
Dr Wild has a long history of contributing to the Chemistry department. A leading businessman and philanthropist, his Wild Scholarship programme has allowed more than 67 international postgraduate students to study chemistry at York.
Student Madeline Hartley received funding through the Wild Scholarships programme. She said:
“This award allowed me to study at York without having to worry as much about finances. It was also a huge confidence boost – proving to me that someone believed I was good enough and that has been really important.”
Olga Semenova, another Wild Scholar, added: “Dr Wild’s support allowed me to study at an outstandingly high-level university. Without this generous award this dream wouldn’t have been possible.”
Furthermore, Dr Wild was an essential member of the team that created the internationally renowned Wolfson Atmospheric Chemistry Laboratories. In 2015, he encouraged over 120 alumni and friends of the Chemistry department to support its fiftieth anniversary in aid of undergraduate internships and postdoctoral fellowships. In total, Dr Wild’s support over the last eight years has helped to raise more than £30million for York Chemistry.
The University of York’s Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Koen Lamberts, was enthusiastic about the potential of this new development to make a real impact on students:
“The support from Dr Wild really does transform what we do here at the University of York. It helps us to raise our aspirations and unlock other sources of funding for our research and teaching. The Department of Chemistry’s success in both teaching and research has been enhanced significantly through Dr Wild’s support.”
Professor Duncan Bruce, Head of the Department of Chemistry, added:
“We are one of the UK’s leading departments – recognised internationally for our teaching and research. Through Dr Wild’s support we aim to develop yet further and enhance our outstanding facilities and research opportunities for students and academics.”