Facebook CEO unveils school gift

2010-09-24 22:22
Chicago - Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg on Friday pledged to set up a foundation to donate $100m to public schools over the next five years.

The 26-year-old internet tycoon announced his first major gift on Oprah Winfrey's talk show on the same day an unflattering movie about Facebook's early days, The Social Network, was having its premiere.

Zuckerberg told Winfrey that he picked schools in Newark, New Jersey's largest city, for the gift "because I believe in these guys".

"These guys" are New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a cost-cutting governor who has become a star of the Republican party, and Newark Mayor Cory Booker, whose celebrity connections have made him New Jersey's next highest-profile politician. The three appeared together on Friday on Winfrey's show.

Wearing a gray t-shirt, black jacket and tennis shoes, Zuckerberg said he chose to make his philanthropic debut in education "because every child deserves a good education and right now that's not happening". He said he wants other children to have the same opportunities he had.

Zuckerberg said his gift is a challenge grant, and Booker said he is lining up money from other foundations. The goal is to raise $100m more to match what Zuckerberg is to contribute over five years through his new foundation called Startup: Education. Booker also will raise $50m more to serve the "disaffected youth" of the city.

Newark schools have been plagued for years by low test scores, poor graduation rates and crumbling buildings. The system was taken over by the state in 1995 after instances of waste and mismanagement, including the spending of taxpayer money by school board members on cars and restaurant meals.

Last year, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced $290m in education grants, including $100 million for the school system in Tampa, Florida, and $90m for the Memphis, Tennessee, district. The Gates Foundation also has given more than $150m to New York City schools over the past eight years.

Few details were disclosed on Friday morning about how Zuckerberg's money is to be spent.

Zuckerberg grew up in Dobbs Ferry, New York, graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire in 2002 and attended Harvard before dropping out to work full time on Facebook. He has no connection to Newark other than knowing Booker, a charismatic 41-year-old politician who has the ear of President Barack Obama and has helped the city get major donations from Winfrey and New Jersey's Jon Bon Jovi.

The announcement comes a week before The Social Network opens widely. The movie, whose tagline is "You don't get to 500 million friends without making a few enemies," portrays Zuckerberg as taking the idea for Facebook from other Harvard students.
- AP
Read more on:    facebook  |  mark zuckerberg  |  us  |  social networks
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Camping gear!

We’ve got all your camping must have’s right here at mind blowing low prices. Check them out now!

Herbex – buy 3 & get 1 free!

Fat burn packs, appetite control chewies, stretch mark cream and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

30% off Jinger Jack handbags

Spice up your wardrobe and save 30% on stylish Jinger Jack handbags. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Buy 3 books & pay for 2

The cheapest of the 3 books will be free. Offer valid while stocks last. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

Deal of the week!

Hisense 40” Full HD LED Television now R3999. Offer valid while stocks last. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Today is a good day to network and share your ideas and thoughts with your colleagues and friends. Information overload is...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.