William Conway Jr., co-founder of The Carlyle Group, and his wife, Joanne give $20M To Catholic University.

Conway School of Nursing at Catholic University
Conway School of Nursing at Catholic University

The Catholic University of America has received a $20 million donation from William Conway Jr., co-founder of D.C.-based investment firm The Carlyle Group, and his wife, Joanne.

The school will use the donation to establish the Conway School of Nursing, which is a new nursing and sciences building to be built on campus.

The nursing school provides Conway Scholars with opportunities for clinical placements and summer internships, primarily in the Washington, D.C., area.

The William and Joanne Conway Nursing Scholars Program — designed to expose high-achieving undergraduate students to careers in nursing and to encourage them to fill nursing jobs in the Washington, D.C., area after graduation — is a path to success for young people who want to become baccalaureate-prepared nurses.

The Catholic University of America https://nursing.catholic.edu/alumni-and-giving/

The Conway scholarships cover tuition, fees, room and board, and books. The grant also funds a position for a faculty mentor who works with the scholars throughout their studies. In addition, the grant supports a review course to prepare students in the program for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses that they take following graduation.

In May 2017, the first cohort of Conway Scholars graduated with 100% job placement.

Additionally, partial Conway scholarships may be awarded in certain cases. 

A $375,000 grant from Trustee Emeritus Tony Tersigni and the Tersigni Family Foundation helped fund the renovation and state-of-the-art equipment for an expanded simulation center in the school. The simulation center, named in the family’s honor, will be dedicated during Cardinal Weekend at the end of October.  

These are just a couple of examples of the impact made by our donors. To learn more about how you can donate, visit the University’s giving website.

Photo: Bloomberg

William and Joanne Conway

NET WORTH: $3 billion

Carlyle Group, Co-Founder & Co-CEO

  • William Conway Jr. is one of three billionaire founders of private equity firm Carlyle Group.
  • Conway stepped down as co-CEO in January 2018 and now serves as co-executive chairman with co founder and billionaire David Rubenstein.
  • The trio took Carlyle public on the Nasdaq exchange in 2012, and the firm now has about $210 billion in assets under management.
  • They used their Beltway connections–George H.W. Bush was among their advisers–to invest in defense-oriented companies.
  • Before founding Carlyle he was the chief financial officer of telecom company MCI Communications.
  • Conway is a big donor to poverty alleviation and education. His most recent pledges include $10 million to University of Maryland School of Nursing.

William Conway has not signed the giving pledge, but the billionaire made waves a few years ago when he announced that he wanted to give away at least $1 billion to the Washington D.C. community. So far, he has given away at least $55 million towards scholarships and tuition assistance for nursing programs at several D.C.-based universities. He and his wife Joanne also helm the Bedford Falls Foundation.

William Conway, Jr. got his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth and then got an MBA from University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He held a position as CFO of MCI Communications before he cofounded private equity firm Carlyle Group. He serves as co-CEO along with David Rubenstein, while Daniel D’Aniello, a major contributor to the think tank American Enterprise Institute, is chairman.  The politically connected trio leveraged relationships with George H.W. Bush and former British Prime Minister John Major to secure ownership of struggling defense businesses. Carlyle’s recent investments include Japanese pharmaceuticals giant Sunsho Pharmaceutical and hedge fund manager Diversified Global Asset Management Corporation. 

In 2012, Conway fielded suggestions from the public and has since made a series of gifts totaling at least $55 million towards scholarships and tuition assistance for nursing students attending LAYC Career Academy.

The foundation has recently made gifts of $1 million to Johns Hopkins, Catholic University, and the University of Virginia, as well as $400,000 to Trinity Washington University, all in the name of Nursing Education.

Photo: The Catholic University of America

That flurry of grantmaking also involved $70,000 towards a pilot program at Community of Hope to train people to be medical receptionists and medical assistants. The following year, Community of Hope received a $1.75 million pledge from the Bedford Falls Foundation. $5 million also recently went to University of Virginia School of Nursing to provide need-based scholarships for students in the Clinical Nurse Leader program as well as faculty support.

When Conway made his announcement, another philanthropic priority of those initial grants was helping low-income people through education and human services. At least $10 million has gone to Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Washington, and at least $10 million to Catholic charities. Conway has given at least $5 million to the Center for Employment Training at SOME (So Others Might Eat). Conway has also been a steady funder of Capital Area Food Bank.





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