Kent State’s Fashion School Receives $2.5 Million Gift From Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation

Gift to endow Fashion School chair and support study-away program for students

Kent, Ohio – May 1, 2017 – Kent State University has received a $2.5 million gift for its Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising from the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation of Hudson, Ohio. The gift will fund two initiatives: $1.5 million to endow a chair to support the Fashion School’s director and a matching grant of up to $1 million to support the study-away program benefiting fashion school students. 

“This incredible gift from the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation will greatly enhance global experiences for our fashion students,” said Kent State President Beverly Warren. “The foundation’s support of our Fashion School elevates the professional trajectory of both faculty and students and positions Kent State as a distinctive global innovator.”

Kent State’s Fashion School is consistently rated among the best fashion institutions in the United States and worldwide. It is currently ranked No. 3 in the U.S. for design and merchandising by and No. 19 in the world by The Business of Fashion’s 2016 Global Fashion School Ranking.

A hallmark of an exceptional global university is providing life-changing experiences for its students to become globally competent leaders in their fields. Kent State’s Fashion School is now the first in the country to require a study-away experience for all fashion students. Opportunities to spend a semester in Florence, Italy, with the world’s best designers, work in the Fashion School’s New York City Studio, and programs in Paris and Hong Kong provide life-changing experiences and a reputation for excellence that makes Kent State fashion students globally competitive. 

“Peg Morgan, our founder, had a lifelong interest in fashion and always deeply valued education,” said Rick Kellar, president of the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation. “The Fashion School at Kent State is a perfect match for her creative and personal passions. Peg’s legacy of support for Kent State will continue to be carried out through this gift, accelerating the ascension of Kent State as the premier global educator of future fashion industry leaders.”

The gift was formally announced by President Warren on Saturday, April 29, at the 2017 Annual Fashion Show, FS2 Presented by Michael Kors – Sponsor/VIP Show. The annual fashion show highlights the talents and creations of the Fashion School’s design and merchandising students. Also that evening, Don Witkowski, a Kent State alumnus and president of men’s at Michael Kors, was inducted into the Fashion School’s Hall of Fame.

About Kent State University
Kent State University is one of 76 public higher-research universities, as categorized by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and is ranked in the first-tier list of Best National Universities by U.S. News & World Report. With eight campuses spanning Northeast Ohio, a College of Podiatric Medicine, a Regional Academic Center, and academic sites in major world capitals such as New York City, Geneva and Florence, the university prepares students to be industry leaders, dynamic innovators and change agents who make significant impacts nationally and around the world. 

For more information about Kent State, visit

About the Fashion School at Kent State 
Kent State University’s School of Fashion Design and Merchandising is consistently rated among the best fashion institutions in the U.S. and worldwide. Fashion-specific surveys rank Kent State’s Fashion School alongside its national and international peer institutions. 

Additionally, Kent State ranks in the top tier of American universities, according to U.S. News and World Report, and it is the only public university in Northeast Ohio to receive such a distinction. Information about Kent State’s Fashion School is available at

About Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation
The Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation was founded in 2001 in Hudson, Ohio, as a private grantmaking foundation. Morgan Adhesives founder Burton D. Morgan, Margaret (Peg) Clark Morgan’s husband, provided the initial donation to establish the foundation. The foundation works to pursue the interests of Peg Morgan, a longtime Hudson resident and active community member. The Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation supports the nourishment of the human mind through the promotion of mental wellness, the arts, and education. It envisions a world where:

  • All regard mental wellness as an integral part of a healthy life.
  • Recovery from mental illness is the expectation.
  • The arts and education are cornerstones of a vibrant society.

Information about the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation is available at

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Media Contacts:
Eric Mansfield,, 330-672-2797
Emily Vincent,, 330-672-8595

For questions about the Kent State University Foundation, contact:
Leigh Greenfelder,, 330-672-7108

POSTED: Monday, May 1, 2017 - 2:32pm
UPDATED: Monday, May 1, 2017 - 2:33pm
University Communications and Marketing