Rogers Foundation Awards $20 Million to Black Mountain Institute

Rogers Foundation Awards $20 Million to Black Mountain Institute

The University of Nevada, Las Vegas has announced an additional $20 million gift from the Rogers Foundation in Las Vegas in support of the university's international literary center.

The funds will enable the Beverly Rogers and Carol C. Harter Black Mountain Institute, which is affiliated with the UNLV English Department's creative writing program, to add graduate programs in creative nonfiction and dramatic writing to its existing fiction and poetry offerings. The gift also will fund and expansion of the institute's City of Asylum program, which sponsors writers whose creative expression puts them in danger in their home countries; an increase in the creative writing program's support for graduate assistants; and a $50,000 literary prize and Jim Rogers Contrarian Lecture series, to be awarded/held in alternating years.

Established by attorney, television station owner, and UNLV chancellor James Rogers, who died last June, and his wife, Beverly, the Rogers Foundation, which supports education and the arts in southern Nevada, pledged $10 million to the Black Mountain Institute in 2013. "What lifts one raises the stature of all the others," said Beverly Rogers, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports. "We wanted to put Las Vegas in position to be on the map in a positive way."

"The impact of this gift is significant, not only because it's easily one of the largest gifts in the history of the university, but it essentially propels this program into the upper echelon around the country," said UNLV president Len Jessup. "It takes what was already a very good program and now makes it one of the very best in the country. And it's important. What the Black Mountain Institute does is important."