Note for Note

“We believe music is a universal language that has a transformative effect on people,” says Marichu Valencia.

Valencia and her husband Donald J. Puglisi, H12, are dedicated to teaching that language around the world. Recently, Puglisi, a MBNA America Professor Emeritus of Business and Board of Trustees member, and Valencia, a member of the UD President’s Leadership Council, made history when they signed a new $5 million commitment to the Donald J. Puglisi and Marichu C. Valencia Music Enrichment Fund, an unrestricted endowed fund they created in 2010 to support the UD Department of Music.

The loyal UD couple’s gift, the single largest contribution to the College of Arts and Sciences from a living person in the history of the University, will benefit many activities in the music department. Their generosity will support student ensembles, visiting professors, guest artists, instrument equipment and travel costs to conferences. It will also bolster the breadth and depth of the fund’s impact on music students at the University.

“The music programs at UD provide unparalleled experiences to our local, as well as global, audiences,” Puglisi said. “Our continuing investment in those programs is a recognition of the accomplishments and the promise of our extraordinary students and faculty, and our confidence in the future of our great University.”

Over the years, Puglisi and Valencia’s leadership and collective contributions have impacted innumerable students and faculty in various colleges, and have even motivated a community of music enthusiasts to financially support the University.

“It is our hope that this gift will help to further enrich the lives of our students, faculty and community as well as encourage future generations to support the arts,” says Valencia.

Russell E. Murray Jr., music department chair and professor and founding director of the University of Delaware Collegium Musicum, said he is extraordinarily grateful to the couple for their generosity and personal involvement in the Department of Music.

“This gift marks a new chapter for the Department of Music,” he adds. “Don and Marichu’s past gifts have made a real difference in the life of the department and this new gift allows us to build on the excellence of the department in new and exciting ways.”

The gift will ensure a lasting legacy of music education, appreciation and enrichment at not only UD, but throughout the region.

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