Penn receives $5m cryptocurrency gift, largest in University’s history

The landmark commitment will support the growth of programs within the Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance at the Wharton School.

Aerial view of Wharton building on Penn campus with skyline of the city behind it

The University of Pennsylvania is delighted to announce a new anonymous gift of $5 million in the form of Bitcoin—the largest cryptocurrency gift the University has ever received. Facilitated by NYDIG, an industry leader in providing Bitcoin technology and financial services, the landmark commitment will support the growth of programs within the Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance at the Wharton School.

“As the nature of philanthropy continues to evolve, Penn stands at the forefront of innovative ways to make a difference in the world,” said Penn President Amy Gutmann. “I am deeply grateful for this creative and groundbreaking gift to support the important work of the Stevens Center. At the Center, the intersection of finance and technology is being reinvented through research, exploratory projects, and engagement with industry leaders, to make the greatest global contributions.”

The Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance was established with the support and partnership of 1991 Wharton undergraduate alumnus Ross Stevens and remains a top entity for education and research in the field of fintech, a rising area of interest among Penn students. By engaging students with Wharton faculty and financial institution leaders, they become immersed in learning about the digital currency ecosystem. Led by Faculty Director David Musto, the Ronald O. Perelman Professor in Finance, the Stevens Center connects curriculum, industry resources and data, events, and partnerships that advance opportunities in fintech.

“With finance at the heart, history, and future of the Wharton School, we are honored to receive this incredible gift,” said Wharton Dean Erika James. “This investment marks a new era and mode of giving to the University and lifts up opportunities for students to become tomorrow’s leaders in finance—through exceptional coursework and transformative interactions with policymakers and industry experts. The blend of innovative philanthropy with the outcomes this promises for students makes this a truly exciting moment for the Wharton community.”

Cryptocurrency gifts to the University of Pennsylvania are processed through NYDIG, which delivers the comprehensive infrastructure to accept these donations as a novel avenue of giving to the University.

NYDIG provides Bitcoin investment and technology solutions to insurers, banks, corporations, institutions, and high-net-worth individuals. The firm and its products meet the industry's highest regulatory, audit, and governance standards. Learn more at, or connect on LinkedIn and Twitter.