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Ohio Wesleyan Receives $400,000 Gift to Support Travel-Learning Opportunities
Graduate’s Contribution Creates New Endowed Fund, Fellowship Program for Students, Faculty

February 23, 2011

DELAWARE, OH – Ohio Wesleyan University has received a five-year, $400,000 gift from 1953 graduate and global businessman Robert P. Bauman of Stuart, Fla., to help support international travel-learning opportunities.

Bauman’s gift establishes The Robert Bauman Travel Learning Endowment Fund, which will support a new Bauman Fellows program. The program will benefit faculty members seeking to create additional travel-learning courses and students wishing to participate in OWU’s growing number of classes that link academic theory with hands-on experience in a global context.

“Bauman Fellows will set the standard for rigorous learning that connects theory to practice using travel-learning as a transformational educational tool,” said President Rock Jones, Ph.D. “Bob Bauman’s generous gift allows our students and faculty to obtain an even deeper knowledge of their subject matter and an even richer understanding and appreciation of different cultures.”

Ohio Wesleyan’s new Bauman Fellows will be selected annually based upon proposals submitted by interested students and faculty. Criteria will include each proposal’s academic rigor, travel-related research, written work, and contribution to the overall OWU curriculum and educational experience.

While a student at Ohio Wesleyan, Bauman majored in economics and accounting. He earned his master’s degree in business administration at Harvard University. During his notable career, he worked for 23 years for General Foods Corp., including serving as its president of international operations. Later, he served as chairman and chief executive officer of the aviation industry’s AVCO Corp. and as vice chairman and director of Textron Inc. after it acquired AVCO.

In 1986, Bauman was named chief executive officer of The Beecham Group PLC, headquartered in England, where he was the driving force behind the pharmaceutical manufacturer’s 1989 merger with SmithKline Beckman. He is the co-author of a book about the experience: “From Promise to Performance: A Journey of Transformation at SmithKline Beecham.” In 1994, he became chairman of British Aerospace PLC and then deputy chairman of BTR PLC in England.

Bauman is a former member of the Ohio Wesleyan Board of Trustees and earned OWU’s Distinguished Achievement Award in 2000. As a student, he also was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, a varsity tennis player, a member of the student government, and earned membership in the Omicron Delta Kappa leadership honorary.

“Bob Bauman is a visionary leader,” President Jones said. “Ohio Wesleyan is proud to call him an alumnus and equally proud to create the Bauman Fellows program in his name. His gift acknowledges the transformational impact of internationally focused education and ensures that such an education is a fundamental component of the Ohio Wesleyan experience for generations to come.”

To learn more about educational opportunities at Ohio Wesleyan, visit practice.owu.edu. To learn about supporting OWU’s educational mission and vision, visit giving.owu.edu.


Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier small, private universities, with more than 90 undergraduate majors, sequences, and courses of study, and 23 Division III varsity sports. Located in Delaware, Ohio, just minutes north of Ohio’s capital and largest city, Columbus, the university combines a globally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities that translate classroom theory into real-world practice. OWU’s close-knit community of 1,850 students represents 45 states and 52 countries. Ohio Wesleyan earned a 2009 Presidential Award for Excellence in General Community Service, is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” and is included on the “best colleges” lists of U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. Learn more at www.owu.edu.