The donation will be used to expand programming and fund renovations of the Freeman Center for Jewish Life, according to a Duke News press release. Rubenstein, current chair of the Board of Trustees, is co-chair of the Duke Forward capital campaign.
“When I came to Duke in the mid-1960s, Jewish life was almost invisible,” Rubenstein said in the press release. “Now it is a vibrant and essential part of the University that is growing every year. It is my hope that Jewish students and their families will think of Duke as a destination for a great education and a positive Jewish experience.”
Of the money, $1.5 million will go toward funding new initiatives and staff positions, and $400,000 will be put toward the renovations, which will happen over the summer.
Between 10 and 12 percent of Duke's student body is Jewish, including 700 undergraduates, the press release noted.Duke Forward reached the $2 billion mark of its $3.25 billion fundraising goal last week. The campaign went public in 2012 and will conclude in 2017.
Rubenstein has given more than $50 million to the University over the years, including the largest donations that the Sanford School of Public Policy and the library system have ever received, at $12 million and $13.6 million, respectively.