UNH Alumna Pledges $8M to Expand Support for Students


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Friday, January 27, 2017
Judith Blake

Judith “Jude” Blake ’77 has pledged $8 million of her estate to the University of New Hampshire to support students in the business college as well as to enable more students to participate in the university’s Northeast Passage program and the Shoals Marine Laboratory.

DURHAM, N.H. – Judith “Jude” Blake ’77 has pledged $8 million of her estate to the University of New Hampshire to support students in the business college as well as to enable more students to participate in the university’s Northeast Passage program and the Shoals Marine Laboratory.

Most of the bequest will provide scholarships for students in the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics and address needs that directly benefit business students.  

“Jude is one of the university’s most passionate supporters and her commitment to our students is inspiring,” said UNH President Mark Huddleston. “Jude’s generosity will ensure future generations of students have access to a world-class education as well as unique opportunities with Northeast Passage and the Shoals Marine Lab. We are grateful for her support and incredible generosity.” Huddleston also noted that Blake’s gift made it possible for the university to feel confident in setting its record-breaking $275 million campaign goal.

Blake, a retired marketing executive and resident of Portsmouth, said she was pleased to learn her gift could advance the university’s fundraising goals.

“I believe that in a state like New Hampshire one person really can make a difference and that if you have the capability to give back you should,” Blake said. “There are so many ways to give back -- time, talent and treasure – and they are all important.”

Blake does it all at UNH. She has served or is serving on the University System of New Hampshire Board of Trustees, the UNH Foundation Board of Directors, the UNH Alumni Association Board of Directors and the Paul College Advisory Board. She mentors students and teaches beverage management classes. Her bequest builds on the endowed scholarship she created for business students more than a decade ago.

“Higher education is so very important,” she added. “It’s the path to success in life and making an outstanding UNH education more accessible and affordable for students is what drives me. It was important for me to make this gift now to recognize what Mark Huddleston has accomplished at UNH. It is because of his leadership that we are in the incredibly strong position we are in now.”

In 2016 the University of New Hampshire launched the largest fundraising campaign in its history to provide critical support for students, faculty, infrastructure and programs. Learn more about CELEBRATE 150: The Campaign for UNH and how you can help reach the $275 million goal. 

The University of New Hampshire is a flagship research university that inspires innovation and transforms lives in our state, nation and world. More than 16,000 students from all 50 states and 71 countries engage with an award-winning faculty in top ranked programs in business, engineering, law, liberal arts and the sciences across more than 200 programs of study. UNH’s research portfolio includes partnerships with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, receiving more than $100 million in competitive external funding every year to further explore and define the frontiers of land, sea and space.