The gift will support promising initiatives in areas such as materials science, neuroscience, and energy studies; the recruitment of top students and faculty; and an expansion of MCS's research and instructional infrastructure. In recognition of the gift, the university will create the Glen de Vries Dean's Chair.
A New York native, de Vries received his undergraduate degree in molecular biology and genetics from Carnegie Mellon in 1994. He later worked as a research scientist at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center and studied computer science at New York University's Courant Institute of Mathematics before starting Medidata, a life sciences technology provider, in 1999. In 2017, de Vries received the CMU Alumni Achievement Award.
A member of the Carnegie Mellon University President's Global Advisory Council, de Vries previously helped endow a Presidential Fellowship in the biological sciences at CMU. He also is a Columbia HITLAB Fellow, a member of the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association European Advisory Board, and serves on the board of the Young Scientist Foundation, which prepares high school students for success at the university level through training and mentorship.
"Foundational science and math are at the core of CMU's education and research, and we are deeply grateful to Glen for ensuring that [MCS Dean Rebecca] Doerge and those who follow her will have the critical resources they need to advance the Mellon College of Science," said CMU interim president Farnam Jahanian. "Since graduating from MCS, Glen has built an extraordinary career at the intersection of science, business, and medicine, and his work has revolutionized how we conduct medical research. His decision to give back to CMU at this time inspires all of us."