Local family donates $2 million to UTRGV

EDINBURG — University of Texas Rio Grande Valley officials announced the largest donation to the institution since it was created, a gift of $2 million by the Vackar family, owners of the local Bert Ogden car dealerships.

UTRGV President Guy Bailey, joined by Robert and Janet Vackar, announced the donation during a ceremony at the Performing Arts Center yesterday morning.

“This is a seminal event in the history of our institution,” Bailey said. “An endowed scholarship of this magnitude means that students will forever benefit from the generosity of the Vackar family.”

The money will be used to create two endowed scholarship funds — $1 million for the Janet Vackar scholarship for mass communication in the college of liberal arts and $1 million for the Robert Vackar scholarship for the college of business and entrepreneurship.

Endowed funds are in-vested by the university to use earned income to provide scholarships, allowing the university to use the funds forever and donors to continue adding funds to the endowment if desired.

Janet Vackar said the family discussed the donation and agreed on where they wanted the scholar-ships to go based on their ties to those particular colleges.

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dperez-hernandez@themonitor.com