Iowa State University this morning announced it has received one of the largest gifts in its history. Valued at approximately $93 million, the gift is expected to transform key academic programs at the university, officials said.

The donation to the Iowa State University Foundation is an equity stake representing majority ownership of Curriculum Associates LLC, an education company headquartered in Billerica, Mass. The gift was made by a couple, both Iowa State alums, who wish to remain anonymous, the university said.

The gift, in the form of a permanent, endowed fund, will benefit Iowa State University's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

"A gift of this magnitude will transform the college – and the university – for generations to come," ISU President Steven Leath said. "Every student at Iowa State at one time or another, even if their major is in another college, takes classes in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. This gift will impact hundreds of thousands of future Iowa State students."

The contribution will count toward ISU's eight-year comprehensive campaign, Forever True, For Iowa State, which seeks to raise $1.1 billion for the university by July 2020.

The majority interest is being donated under a structure similar to nonvoting shares of stock. It is expected that the equity interest will be sold through a management-led sale of the company that will be directed by Curriculum Associates' second-largest equity holder, CEO Rob Waldron. The final valuation of the gift will depend on market considerations at the time the sale occurs.

Initial investments will support the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication, the arts and humanities, including the ISU theater program, and programs focused on data science and computing.