Faculty and Staff Giving at Arts & Science

Mark Lautens

“It’s about people I’ve met who have made a personal difference.”

By Sarah MacFarlane

Professor Mark Lautens of the Department of Chemistry first felt the motivation to give back as an undergraduate student at the University of Guelph. “My family didn’t have much money, so I was lucky that I got scholarships,” he says. “I always thought there should be help for people who need help.”

A Faculty of Arts & Science donor for more than a decade, Lautens has chosen areas to support based on personal connections.

“For me, giving is very personal,” he says. “It’s not institutional. It’s not obligatory. It’s not guilt. It’s about people I’ve met that have made a personal difference. I tend to think about it in those terms — not how much can I afford to give, but how much impact has a person or place had on me, and what can I do about that?”

He began by giving to a scholarship established in honour of Professor David Farrar, former chair of the Department of Chemistry. “Dave had been very instrumental and helpful to me during a period of crisis in my life,” says Lautens.

Later, a scholarship was established in memory of Professor Adrian Brook, and Lautens has been donating to it ever since. “Adrian was one of the first faculty members I worked with when I was hired,” he says. “He was sort of a cheerleader for me. When I became a University Professor, even though he was very ill, he came to see me inducted.”

Giving for Lautens is a way to honour the individuals who have made a difference in his life, while supporting students in need. “Not all students have the same opportunity,” he says. “If you look at it from the point of view of who’s on the receiving end of these scholarships, you realize that they need a hand and can do great things if they’re given a proper chance.”

“I have colleagues who gave me a chance,” Lautens continues. “I have colleagues who have supported me and stood by me. So unless your life has been more or less perfect, chances are somebody in your workplace made a difference.”


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Niamh (pronounced ‘Neeve’) Earls Hallworth
Senior Development Officer, Legacy and Leadership Giving

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I get a tax receipt?
Yes, a charitable tax receipt will be provided for your donation. Payroll donations will be reflected on your T4.

What if I decide to cancel my payroll donation?
Employees can request to have their payroll donations cancelled at any time by contacting the Office of Advancement.

Can I speak with someone about my donation?
If you have any questions about making a donation to the Faculty of Arts & Science, please contact Niamh Earls Hallworth, Senior Development Officer, at niamh.earls@utoronto.ca or telephone 416.978.1570.

I have a different question
Please see the Boundless Campaign’s FAQ for more information on gifts to U of T.