Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Letter of the Day

Looking beyond the name

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The University of Manitoba has to deal with the issue of what happens to named faculties when the institution reduces from 20 faculties to 13 (Decision on named faculties remains at discussion stage, July 13).

Named buildings should be reserved for people with accomplishments connected to that faculty or organization. One that comes to mind is Harry Medovy House. Dr. Medovy was a prominent Winnipeg pediatrician in the '60s, and in his honour an apartment building for medical interns was built that still stands today.

Real philanthropy is when a person altruistically donates money to a social cause, often times anonymously.

Furthermore, many building donors are getting inexpensive advertising once their donation is amortized over the course of the building's life. Don't forget the tax-receipt grey area. Someone must determine the naming-rights value and subtract that from the donation total in order to issue a tax receipt to the donor.

Let's think about the big picture and long-term ramifications before naming buildings and stop confusing philanthropy with advertising.

 

MINDY BARSKY-VEITCH

Winnipeg

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 16, 2012 A11

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