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In an institution with the better part of two centuries under our belt, it’s tempting to focus on sustainability. But sustainability is contradictory to vision, and furthermore, it’s contradictory to the principles of Stephen Girard.

Stephen Girard lived a life not with a hope for sustainability, but with a plan for growth. He left France in search of opportunity. He took on business venture after business venture with temerity. He helped his countrymen and fellow Philadelphians without need for praise or hope for personal gain. Stephen Girard never aimed for sustainability: he aimed for vitality.

It is in this spirit that we ask you to give to Girard, not to keep the College sustainable, but to keep it vital. For years, our sprawling campus in the heart of Philadelphia has been an anchor for the city. But we’re so much more than marble buildings and a wealth of athletic fields; we’re the epicenter of urban education in the fifth largest city in America. We’ve given access to excellence to over 22,000 children. We must give it to over 22,000 more.

When you give to the Girard College Foundation, your funds are distributed where they are most needed, whether that’s for SAT prep courses or Bunsen burners in the science lab. A gift to Girard is also a great way to honor a loved one. I encourage you to explore this section of our site for more information.

I am proud to say that we are offering a high-quality education to the students on our campus. But Stephen Girard’s legacy challenges us to do more.

With your support, we continue our campaign for vitality.


Henry D. Fairfax
Vice President, Enrollment Management and Institutional Advancement