Dartmouth Receives a $150M Gift from Late Time Warner Cable CEO Glenn Britt

In his youth, the communications executive attended Dartmouth with the help of a generous financial aid package.

Man stands at podium wearing suit
Glenn Britt pictured in May of 2012. Darren McCollester/Getty Images for WICT

A donation from the late telecommunications executive Glenn Britt is the largest-ever bequest for scholarships in Dartmouth history.

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The estate of Britt, a former Time Warner Cable CEO who died in 2014, is giving more than $150 million to the university to expand access for students from middle-income families. Around 75 percent of the gift, or $112.5 million, will support undergraduate financial aid, while the remaining $37.5 million will go toward scholarships for students at the Tuck School of Business.

Donations to U.S. higher education institutions have been on the decline, according to the most recent Voluntary Support of Education survey from the Council of Advancement and Support of Education, which found gifts fell by 2.5 percent in the 2023 fiscal year to a total of $58 billion. Despite the dip, major donations like Britt’s are on the rise—the study reported 11 gifts of $100 million or more to institutions of higher education in 2023, compared to seven in 2022.

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The bequest to Dartmouth was activated following the death of Britt’s wife Barbara in August of 2023. It lets the university increase its annual income threshold for a “zero parent contribution” from undergraduates to $125,000 with typical assets, nearly doubling it from $65,000. These students will be expected to contribute no more than $5,000 annually with funds from summer jobs and on-campus employment.

The policy change will take effect in the next academic year to give Dartmouth the most generous threshold in the U.S, according to the university, which noted that around 350 families are expected to receive financial relief under the new terms.

The largest gift in Tuck history

At Tuck, the Britt bequest will represent the largest single outright gift in the business school’s history, and the increase in scholarship funding is expected to bring in more students with high financial burdens, such as first-generation students—who currently represent only 19 percent of the school’s class of 2025.  “The world needs more wide, decisive leaders like Glenn Britt, who understood how to craft a compelling vision for a better future, and then brought that vision to life through inclusive, high-performing teams,” said Matthew Slaughter, dean of the Tuck School of Business, in a statement.

While Dartmouth and Tuck have confirmed that they are receiving at least $150 million, the exact size of the donation is still undetermined. The total bequest will be revealed when the Britt estate is fully settled, said the school.

Britt is largely known for his leadership during an era in which the telecommunications industry rapidly adapted to include new services like high-speed internet and video on demand. He met Barbara, who was working for Time Inc’s in-house publication, when he joined the controller’s department of the media corporation in the 1970s. He later became president of Time Warner Cable in 1999 and its CEO by 2001, eventually leading Time Warner when it spun off from the cable company.

The communications executive was also an alumnus of Dartmouth and Tuck, having studied there with generous financial aid. “Glenn Britt attributed Dartmouth for transforming his life, and he was tremendously grateful for the financial aid award that made his Dartmouth experience possible,” said Dartmouth president Sian Beilock in a statement. “This remarkable bequest from Glenn and Barbara ensures that, regardless of background, the dream of a Dartmouth education can become a reality.”

Dartmouth Receives a $150M Gift from Late Time Warner Cable CEO Glenn Britt