TORONTO, November 12, 2015 – Ryerson University today announced an $8-million gift from the Jack Cockwell family and the Brookfield Partners Foundation. With the Foundation, the Cockwell family’s generosity to Ryerson now exceeds $28 million, making him one of Ryerson’s most generous private sector benefactors.
This gift brings added strength and momentum to Ryerson University’s new Brookfield Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which since January has been supporting innovation and entrepreneurship across the campus and beyond. The Brookfield Institute funds and incubates projects and is a source of policy expertise and thought leadership on today’s most relevant issues related to innovation and entrepreneurship. Already, the Institute has supported a summer basecamp program for high school students, helped establish a fund to scale up Canada’s most promising startups, hosted an app-development workshop, and much more.
Janice Fukakusa, Chair of the Board of Governors of Ryerson University, said, “Jack Cockwell’s generosity to Ryerson University has created extraordinary opportunity for students. His support encourages and inspires the young innovators and entrepreneurs who will be the drivers of our emerging economy.”
“Jack has always been there with us at the forefront of Ryerson development,” said President Sheldon Levy. “The university has pioneered an evolution in entrepreneurial education, and with his help the Institute is reaching out to young people of all ages as the leaders of tomorrow.”
In recognition of the Cockwell family and Brookfield Partners Foundation’s far-reaching generosity, Ryerson University will name its new development on Church Street the Daphne Cockwell Health Sciences Complex in honour of Jack’s mother, who dedicated her life to helping others. The building will house Ryerson’s School of Nutrition, School of Occupational and Public Health, the Midwifery Education program, the Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing and more.
Group Chairman of Brookfield Asset Management, Jack Cockwell has a remarkable history of strengthening support for Ryerson University. Mr. Cockwell has played a leadership role at Ryerson for years. First appointed to Ryerson’s Board of Governors in 1995, he has served as Vice Chair of the Board, Chair of the Finance Committee, and he is currently Chair of the Audit Committee. He also chaired the Building Fundraising Committee for the G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education and has led Ryerson’s Real Estate Advisory Committee. Previous gifts from Mr. Cockwell and Brookfield Partners Foundation include support for the G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education, the Campus Master Plan, and the Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing.
This most recent donation propels Ryerson toward completion of its Make Your Mark campaign, a $200-million fundraising initiative focused on strengthening the University’s research agenda and providing students with the very best opportunities for a distinctive and career-oriented education.