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Meet Tony O'Rourke, Warwick donor

I see that spark ignite in them - the same one Warwick lit in me.

Tony O’Rourke (History, 1966) is a committed supporter of Warwick. He gives his time by volunteering as a student mentor, helping with alumni activities in Scotland and talking to would-be graduates as part of Open Days. He has also pledged a gift in his Will to Warwick. This is his story.

“As a University teacher and researcher, I believe in the power of education.

A good education can alter someone’s life forever, and those around them too. I’ve seen students grow into incredible people, and I believe that Universities make an immeasurable impact on society.

I see first-hand that students are facing different pressures to when I was at Warwick. These days they often worry about finances and whether a course can give them what they need for a career. However, times aren’t changing that much: students still love learning; they’ve got aims, goals, insights and a deft ability to ask the right questions. When we talk about the skills which any degree can offer, and the transformational effect it can have, I see that spark ignite in them – the same one Warwick lit in me.

Not everyone can afford university, even with loans working the way they do now. Knowing that you’ll pay fees back in the long run with your earnings doesn’t make a difference if you can’t afford accommodation, food, and transport in the here and now. That’s only going to get worse, but I believe that everyone deserves the right to a transformational education.

I’ve spent my life helping others reach their furthest potential, and I’m leaving a gift to Warwick in my Will because I feel passionately about alleviating some of the pressures for students in future too.

I’d encourage anyone to keep an up-to-date Will to help look after their loved ones, and to leave gifts to charities like Warwick - it’s simple and something you can do with advice and support from the University, and of course legal guidance from a solicitor or financial advisor.

I hope you keep your spark alive for Warwick. Please join me in lending a hand to future generations. Whether you can leave a gift in your Will, make a donation now, or volunteer your time, it all contributes to the University we know and love and to students, academics and facilities that change the world”.

Tony’s bequest will support the area of greatest need at Warwick including scholarships, research, and campus life.

You could leave a donation to anything you believe in at Warwick, from helping those attend who could not otherwise afford to, to supporting medical research including Cancer and Dementia research; the Library; or your old department.

If you decide this is something you would like to do, or perhaps you would like further information, you can visit our Legacy webpage or contact Natalie Rothwell at or on 024 7615 1941.