In town to open the NBA season against the Boston Celtics, Jeremy Lin ’10, guard for the Brooklyn Nets, today announced a $1 million gift to Harvard University in support of undergraduate financial aid and renovations to the College’s basketball arena.
“Without question, my time at Harvard prepared me well for success both on and off the court,” said Lin. “I’m honored to put that same world-class education in reach for deserving students and to support improvements to the facilities where I spent countless hours practicing and competing.”
Lin played four years for the Crimson (2006–10), served as team captain his senior year, and was a three-time All-Ivy League selection. He was also the first player in Ivy League history to record 1,450 points (1,483), 450 rebounds (487), 400 assists (406), and 200 steals (225).
William R. Fitzsimmons ’67, Harvard College dean of admissions and financial aid, said, “I find it inspiring to see the commitment to financial aid and Athletics that Harvard College and Jeremy share. His generosity will strengthen the Harvard Financial Aid Initiative (HFAI), through which more than half of our undergraduates receive need-based grant aid.”
Harvard College maintains a need-blind admissions policy and, through HFAI, ensures that every admitted student can attend Harvard regardless of their family’s financial background. Harvard awards grants only and never requires students to take out loans to cover the cost of their education.
Including Lin’s time with the Crimson, the stature of Harvard basketball has grown substantially in the last decade. Harvard’s men’s teams have been among the most successful in the Ivy League and the nation during this historic stretch. Under head coach Tommy Amaker, Harvard has won a remarkable five Ivy League titles over six years and has made four appearances in the NCAA Tournament, including two NCAA tournament victories.
“Few spaces on campus are as successful at gathering together our community as Lavietes Pavilion,” said Amaker, Thomas G. Stemberg ’71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men’s Basketball. “I was fortunate to have coached such a remarkable person as Jeremy and I truly believe his commitment will allow us to better serve our campus community, energize current students, and excite future Harvard scholars and athletes.”
The Ray Lavietes ’36 Pavilion, formerly known as the Briggs Athletic Center, was built in 1926 and stands among the most historic of Harvard Athletics venues. Originally housing Harvard’s indoor track and batting cages, the Briggs Center quickly became a central node for many of Harvard’s athletics programs. Following the 1981 construction of the Gordon Indoor Track, the building was refurbished and rededicated as the home of Harvard Basketball. Ongoing renovation of the Lavietes Pavilion is expected to be completed in time for the 2017–18 basketball season.