In St. Gallen entsteht das HSG Learning Center der HSG Stiftung, St. Gallen is the home of the HSG Foundation’s HSG Learning Center, an incubator for new critical thinking and creative design formats. It follows in the footsteps of the University of St. Gallen’s holistic tradition in research and teaching, and is intended to significantly enhance the vision of teaching and learning in the future.
The University of St. Gallen finances half of its overall budget from its own sources, such as partnerships, further education and services. The HSG Foundation plays a crucial role as it is responsible for donations.
The HSG Foundation was founded in 2001 by the University of St. Gallen’s alumni organisation, under the name of the ‘HSG Alumni Foundation’. In 2013, it changed its name and took on a new structure. The foundation aims to foster the development of the University of St. Gallen as one of the world’s leading universities of economics and business
Over the last 20 years, the HSG Foundation has funded professorships, research projects and initiatives at the University of St. Gallen,’ emphasises Ernst Risch, the foundation’s managing director. ‘Since 2016, we have been handling the planning and construction of the HSG Learning Center, and, by extension, the biggest fundraising project within HSG’s story to date.’
The HSG Learning Center is on track
The foundation stone was laid for the HSG Learning Center a good year ago. ‘Despite the pandemic, construction is going to plan and we have made good inroads into developing content at director level,’ says a pleased Risch. ‘This means the project is on track and we are delighted that this innovative teaching and learning platform will soon be open.’ And that day will be here soon: the HSG Foundation will hand over the building to the University of St. Gallen in early 2022, with the opening planned for February 2022 before the start of the spring semester.
Motivation for active, courageous participation
In line with its guiding mission for the HSG Learning Center, ‘New Land’, HSG believes that graduates need to leave their comfort zones and explore ‘terra incognitae’ in order to develop their entrepreneurial spirit and innovative strength. Risch says that recent developments in business and society have also had an effect on the field of tertiary education. As a result, the University of St. Gallen is responding to these challenges through the HSG Learning Centre. ‘We hope it will develop into a forum for dialogue between students, teachers, thought leaders and practice leaders. It’s all about the ability to think critically, design creatively and put things into practice.’
At the HSG Learning Center, the aim is that content is developed through participation, in order to give graduates the skills that fall under the guiding principles of new ground, community spirit, building bridges, base camp and experimentation. These skills will also enable them to work in the service of the common good, opening the door to life-long learning.
The HSG Learning Center is scheduled to open in February 2022. This was made possible by HSG’s biggest ever fundraising campaign.
Supported by former HSG graduates and a broad-based community
The HSG Foundation’s Board of Trustees comprises alumni of the University of St. Gallen, representatives of the university and the president of the alumni organisation. Risch says: ‘It’s very positive that highly successful alumni and entrepreneurs on the Board of Trustees are committed to the development of their alma mater with passion and dedication.’ The managing director attributes the successful fundraising to the fact that the University St. Gallen not only has one of the largest alumni networks in Europe, but also a highly committed group of entrepreneurs and philanthropists. The commitment of individual successful entrepreneurs, whose managers studied at HSG, has contributed in particular to this fundraising success, with the project able to rely on various individuals, foundations and companies as supporters. At present, the donation barometer for the HSG Learning Center stands at CHF 59 million. The goal? CHF 63 million. The HSG Foundation is counting on additional support from foundations, individuals and companies to make up the shortfall of CHF 4 million.
We are on the home stretch, but we have not crossed the finish line yet. By the time we open in February 2022, we want to have reached the donation target of CHF 63 million, thanks to the dedication of our alumni community, other foundations and individual donations.’