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Long History of Philanthropy

Our University’s founding donor, Sir Walter Watson Hughes, set in motion a great legacy.

Sir Walter Watson Hughes

Sir Walter showed great vision in helping to establish the University over a century ago, and he would be proud of the world-class achievements of our alumni. The University of Adelaide now has over 100,000 graduates, more than 100 Rhodes Scholars, five Nobel Laureates, and is among Australia’s leading universities.

Since Sir Walter’s first act of generosity, donations and bequests have played a critical role in the University’s development. The public spirit and benevolence that Sir Walter embodied lives on in our donors and bequestors who continue to support the University of Adelaide today.

We have now reached a point when it behoves us to call science to our aid to a greater extent than hitherto has been done, otherwise we cannot hope to keep in the forefront.
Peter Waite, 1913

Peter Waite donated the historic Urrbrae House and estate to the University of Adelaide in an extraordinary act of generosity. One of the most significant philanthropic acts in Australian history, his legacy created one of Australia’s most celebrated agricultural science research and teaching centres which is now undergoing a $50 million expansion with help from other benefactors.

The Waite Campus holds the internationally renowned Waite Research Institute, Waite Arboretum, Urrbrae House Historic Precinct and Waite Conservation Reserve.

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