Chris’s transformational gift will support all three pillars of the campaign:

  • People: securing our teaching and research, including endowing academic teaching posts, dedicated teaching and research funding;
  • Place: sensitively redeveloping the College site to make it one of the most welcoming, inclusive and environmentally sustainable colleges in Oxford. In so doing, it will put the famous tutorial Professor-student teaching experience at its centre: and
  • Culture: providing sector-leading support for all areas of student life – from scholarships, hardship funding, and access programmes through to welfare support, sports and music.

Most importantly, the For Mansfield. Forever. campaign will help secure the College’s future, allowing it to continue to make an Oxford education accessible to everyone.

Mansfield College is recognised across the University of Oxford, the University sector and nationally as an outstanding leader in widening participation, by identifying and nurturing talent from the widest range of socio-economic backgrounds. The latest published University of Oxford admissions statistics (2020-22) show that 93% of Mansfield’s UK undergraduates came from state schools; one in four came from the most disadvantaged areas of the UK, and 25% were the first in their family to go into higher education at all.

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Mansfield College Principal, Helen Mountfield KC, said:

“On behalf of the College, I want to thank Chris for his outstanding generosity, and his transformational gift, which will have an impact for many generations. His gift is a wonderful endorsement of Mansfield, a great way to get the campaign started, and, along with the many other alumni and friends who offer such loyal and generous support to the College, we are sincerely grateful to Chris for this recognition of Mansfield’s work within Oxford to bring about positive change in society.”

“At a time when many talk about the greater need for social mobility, Mansfield has proved time and again that giving young people with great potential from the broadest range of backgrounds access to Oxford’s world class-teaching and research is truly transformational."

Mansfield College Principal, Helen Mountfield KC

Helen continued: “Our student community is one of the most diverse and academically successful within Oxford University and our students go onto amazing careers. Our community of intellectual pioneers and experts are deeply committed to making the very finest education available to everyone with the capacity and dedication to thrive at the heart of a world-leading university. I am determined to ensure that everyone who joins our community can have everything they need to thrive: world-class teaching and supervision, great facilities, and the practical and financial support to seize every opportunity presented to them.

“We aim to achieve this through our campaign: For Mansfield. Forever.

Prior to Mansfield College, Oxford alumnus Chris Foster attended a state school in the North West of England. He attended Mansfield to study maths from 1997, graduating with a First, and is now a Senior Portfolio Manager at Citadel, one of the most successful investment firms globally.

He said: “I’m a believer in the University of Oxford, and Mansfield College in particular, as a world class institution. It’s highly likely it will continue to educate our future leaders of, and in, society. Who wouldn’t want the best educated in positions that make a difference? It seems obvious to me that such people need to come from backgrounds that represent the broad makeup of society.”

“Mansfield has been a pioneer in widening access, and I think deserves significant support as a leader. This campaign is about the College community coming together to say, ‘yes, that place is important to me, I want to be a part of this effort.’ A groundswell of support from many is to me just as meaningful as one person giving a lead gift. We are sending a message to the future that this is important."

Chris Foster (Maths, 1997)

Chris concluded: “I believe in what Mansfield College stands for, what it has achieved so far, and I admire the ambitious, entrepreneurial and forward-thinking leadership today. That is why I was very happy to kick-start this campaign.”

Read more about our lead benefactor