Villanova University receives $15 million for Widger School of Law

Villanova University receives $15 million for Widger School of Law

Villanova University has announced a $15 million gift from the John F. Scarpa Foundation in support of entrepreneurship initiatives at the Charles Widger School of Law.

The gift — the largest made to date by the foundation — will be used to expand the scope of the John F. Scarpa Center for Law and Entrepreneurship; establish a new endowed professorship in entrepreneurship; create a fund in support of a new annual venture competition for students as well as a program that connects Villanova Law students to other students working on entrepreneurial endeavors; provide scholarships for students who show a commitment to entrepreneurship and innovation; and increase the focus on entrepreneurship, innovation, and collaboration at the school.

The founder and former co-chair of American Cellular Network Corp. and co-founder of UNITEL Wireless Communications Systems, Scarpa has contributed more than $20 million to the university, including a 2015 gift to establish the Scarpa Center. In recognition of Scarpa's lifetime giving to the university, the Law School building will be named John F. Scarpa Hall.

"The entrepreneurial spirit has driven the economic success of our nation, and Villanovans are known for their enterprising aptitude," said the university's president, Fr. Peter Donohue. "This transformational gift will encourage the next generation of Villanova entrepreneurs by expanding their opportunities in the law school and across the entire university. I cannot think of a more fitting way to honor John than to name the law school building in honor of his steadfast commitment to cultivating the entrepreneurship mindset in the study of law and other disciplines across our campus."

"More than ever, we need innovative leaders to tackle challenging issues with bold solutions," said Scarpa. "[T]his new investment will foster an entrepreneurial mindset across campus. I believe in Villanova University and in its law school and know that — together — we can inspire tomorrow's leaders who will change the world for the better. If the law school is 'where law meets business,' then the Scarpa Center is 'where law meets innovation'."