University News

U. begins last phase of capital campaign

By
Contributing Writer
Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The University is making a final push for its Campaign for Academic Enrichment after achieving its goal of raising $1.4 billion in May 2009, 19 months before the campaign’s end in December 2010, according to Ronald Vanden Dorpel MA’71, senior vice president for University advancement.

With “luck,” the campaign — which has raised $1.48 billion, or 106.2 percent of the original goal, since its start in October 2005 — will exceed the $1.5 billion mark by the beginning of April and be “well over” $1.6 billion by its end, Vanden Dorpel said.

The advancement office has increased its activity in order to secure donations in a “tough fundraising economy,” Vanden Dorpel said. Though their activity levels are up, many potential donors are delaying their decisions to pledge, he said.

The economic climate has also impacted the campaign’s returns — diminishing them by around 15 percent, which, according to Vanden Dorpel, is “not bad compared to peers, who are down 25 to 30 percent.” The University’s cash on hand is “holding up reasonably well,” showing a drop of only 2 percent, according to Vanden Dorpel.

With nine months until the campaign’s end, Vanden Dorpel says that the University will continue to seek funding for the “four F’s” — financial aid, faculty chairs, facilities, and the Annual Fund — that are central to its mission. The University still needs to raise money for various projects, including the renovation of Metcalf Chemistry Laboratory and the Medical Education Building.
Beppie Huidekoper, executive vice president for finance and administration, expressed her gratitude to the advancement office for working “so hard,” and to all those donors “who have been willing to step up” in this challenging economic climate. She said that the campaign has “great momentum” and is “building up a little extra steam to get to the finish line.”