Yale Law announces $25M gift to bring back dorms

NEW HAVEN — Yale Law School announced a $25 million gift Thursday from a graduate and his wife that will be used to bring dormitory living back for students.

The gift commitment by Christina and Robert C. Baker will be used to secure and renovate a building for student living space, the Ivy League school said. Plans call for the law school to acquire the building from the Connecticut university in 2018, with renovations beginning later that year.

Spaces once used to house students in the Sterling Law Building are now used for other purposes. The 137,000-square-foot, four-story building will be renamed Robert C. and Christina Baker Hall at Yale Law School.

"Residential life was central to the Yale Law School experience up until a few years ago," said Yale University President Peter Salovey. "Robert Baker's commitment to making on-campus living once again possible for law students is generous and visionary, and will allow future generations to know the benefits of a community where living and learning are closely connected."

Robert Baker, a graduate of Yale College in 1956 and Yale Law School in 1959, is the founder, chairman, and CEO of National Realty & Development Corp., one of the country's largest private development and ownership firms.

"This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Yale Law School to acquire from the university a facility which is only one block away from the Sterling Law Building," Baker said. "I hope my gift will inspire other alumni who appreciate the importance of residential living to the student experience to support this project."

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