Governed by a distinguished Board of Trustees, the Foundation aims to safeguard these institutions for the purpose of providing and sustaining quality education and research for present and future generations of students.
Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Jeffrey Cheah AO is the founder and trustee of the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation (JCF).
He is also the founder and chairman of Sunway Group, one of Southeast Asia’s leading conglomerates with core interests in property, construction, hospitality, retail, education, leisure and healthcare.
As a champion and advocate of quality education and world-class research as well as sustainable development, Tan Sri Cheah continues to fulfil his personal life philosophy of “aspiring to inspire before I expire”.
In 2007, Tan Sri established the JCF. And in 2010, he had transferred, in perpetuity, the equity and rights of Sunway Education Group’s (SEG) educational institutions, worth several billion Ringgit, into the JCF.
Adopting a social enterprise model, JCF is the largest of its kind in advancing education in Malaysia. JCF has disbursed RM670 million in scholarships and grants as of 2022. It is Tan Sri’s goal to give out several billion Ringgit in scholarships in his lifetime.
JCF also established active partnerships with top-tier universities such as University of Cambridge, University of Oxford and Lancaster University in the United Kingdom, and Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Boston and University of California, Berkeley, in the United States. Such collaborations facilitate knowledge transfer and make world-class expertise accessible to Malaysians.
JCF also endowed USD20 million to the United Nations to set up the Jeffrey Sachs Center on Sustainable Development at Sunway University to advance the sustainability agenda in this region, and the Asia headquarters of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UN-SDSN) at Sunway University, making it one of only three such global centres leading continent-wide sustainability initiatives.
This ranks Sunway City Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia alongside Paris, overseeing Europe and Africa, and New York City, overseeing The Americas.
Tan Sri Dr. Jeffrey Cheah is also the co-chair of global initiative Mission 4.7, which was launched by Pope Francis alongside UN-SDSN President Professor Jeffrey Sachs, UNESCO assistant director-general for education Ms. Stefania Giannini and Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, Chancellor of the Pontifical Academies of Sciences and Social Sciences at the Vatican in 2020. Mission 4.7 aims to accelerate the implementation of SDG Target which calls upon governments to ensure that learners acquire the knowledge, skills, values and attributes needed to achieve the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Tan Sri is also the mastermind behind the Jeffrey Cheah Institute on Southeast Asia (JCI), the first public-policy think tank based in a private university in Malaysia, to conduct and promote joint research and teaching on economies, societies, politics, and cultures in Southeast Asia.