BELLINGHAM - A Western Washington University alumnus has donated $500,000 to the school to start a new entrepreneurship program.
Retired Microsoft vice president David Cole and his wife, Denise, made the donation to kick-start the program, which will allow WWU to hire its first professor of entrepreneurship. The new professor will teach courses in a newly created entrepreneurship minor.
The program's goal is to increase the number of graduates that will launch and run their own companies, according to a news release from Western.
"The vision here is to provide entrepreneurial students with some of the knowledge, tools and connections needed to turn their ideas into a business, creating jobs and corresponding social and economic benefit," said David Cole in the news release.
Cole graduated from Western in 1984 with a bachelor's in applied mathematics and in 1986 earned a master's in mathematics. He worked for Microsoft for more than 20 years and was involved in a variety of projects, including the development of Windows, Internet Explorer and MSN.com.