Recent gift to help fund the new Financial Investing & Research Lab in College of Business & Aviation
Cleveland, MS — Dr. Tony Sultani began developing his own business skills intuitively by selling ice cream door-to-door to members of his rural Syrian community.
“I used to carry a jar on my back with lots of ice cream in it and go door to door selling it to make money,” he shared. “I came from a poor background, so I know how it feels to not have access to the things you need.”
Now, he’s ensuring financial resources are accessible to students at Delta State University (DSU) and surrounding communities through his recent donation of a major gift in support of the impending Financial Investing & Research Lab in the DSU College of Business & Aviation.
The new state-of-the-art, 24-station lab will prepare DSU Business majors for careers in financial advising, stock market analysis, and trading. The lab will also serve as a primary hub for financial literacy resources for the local community and will be the site for seminars and lectures on topics such as money management and budgeting.
Sultani, who prefers that his gift’s amount remain confidential at this time, said he believes the lab will be of great benefit not only to DSU students but the community at large.
“I decided to support this lab because financial literacy is so important. As a businessman, I know that it is the foundation for success,” he said. “After discussing it with Dr. Nerma Moore, it was clear that the lab would not just help Delta State students, but the community and fill a big need.”
DSU Director of Development Dr. Nerma Moore said Sultani’s generous gift will help support a worthy cause.
“Financial literacy is one of the most important life skills for an individual to possess,” she said. “Based on recent data published by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, 63% of Americans are classified as ‘financially illiterate.’ With the creation of our Financial Investing & Research Lab, we not only hope to introduce and expose our students to new career path ideas but help to close the financial literacy gap.”
Born and raised in the village of Ain Dabesh, located near the small city of Safita in northwestern Syria, Sultani is an oncology specialist who has been practicing for 31 years. He has spent the last 22 years treating and caring for patients in the Mississippi Delta.
“I truly enjoy taking care of the great people in the Delta, saving them from traveling to get the care they need,” he said. “People should have equal access to healthcare in all communities, and I am happy that I am able to serve those in need in this region.”
Moore praised Sultani for his long-term support and commitment to helping students in need.
“Dr. Sultani is a serial investor…He is passionate about the stock market, and this gift perfectly matches donor passion and project need,” she said.
“Last year, Dr. Sultani donated $10,000 to create the Sultani Endowment Scholarship Fund, a fund that will provide scholarship support to qualified business majors in perpetuity. This most recent generous gift from Dr. Sultani will allow us to take the next steps in completing the lab. With so many worthy causes to support, we are grateful that Dr. Sultani chose to include Delta State in his philanthropic portfolio.”