Fund-Raising Campaign Expected To Meet Goals
As it enters its sixth and final year, Campaign UConn appears set to achieve its goal of raising $300 million in private support for the University by June 2004. As of June 30, 2003, the campaign had received slightly more than $252 million in gifts and pledges, or 84 percent of the target.
For the year 2002-03, the UConn Foundation recorded $49.73 million in new gifts and pledges, an increase of $3.47 million (7 percent) over 2002. It was the second highest yearly fund-raising total in the University's history; in 2001, $50.6 million was raised.
Since the campaign began, $24.8 million has been raised for faculty support, $38.9 million for scholarships, and $188.3 million for programs. The goals are $75 million each for faculty and scholarship support, and $150 million for programs.
Gifts to endowment totaled $8.95 million, and $40.78 million was designated to fund current operations. Since the beginning of the campaign, a total of $147 million has been raised for current operations and $105 million for endowment.
The campaign set a record in 2002-03 with 38,483 donors, an increase of 9 percent over the previous year. UConn ranks seventh in the nation among public universities with an alumni participation rate of 24 percent.
The momentum of the campaign has remained steady since it began. In recent years, the level of giving has been sustained in the $50 million annual range and donors have continued to contribute, despite the difficult economy. At the same time, annual support has increased substantially almost every year since 1995, the year UConn 2000 was enacted, giving fund-raising a considerable boost. In 1995, University-wide giving was approximately $8 million.
"The opportunities are abundant and I am confident that we will meet - if not exceed - our goals for the campaign," says John Martin, president of the UConn Foundation.
In 2002-03, gifts were designated as follows: $16.89 million to Storrs, the regional campuses, and the law school; $13.07 million for the Health Center; and $19.77 million for athletics. An upsurge in interest in the football program accounts for many of the gifts to athletics this year. To date the Health Center and athletics have raised the most toward their campaign goals, with the Neag School of Education, the School of Law, and the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources following closely in the percentage of their goals raised.
"UConn is a rising star nationally in higher education and our donors recognize that and want that trend to continue," says Anna Connor, director of Campaign UConn. "While we are on pace to reach our goal, we'd like to have our biggest year in 2004 and exceed $300 million."
Also during the year 2002-03, 48 new endowments were established. Since the beginning of the campaign, the number of endowment funds has increased from 601 to 941, with the majority designated for scholarships.
A delay in receiving matching funds from the state due to Connecticut's budget crisis has caused some concern. More than $14 million is currently due to the University. State officials have assured the University and the Foundation of their commitment to this program, however, and it is scheduled to remain in effect through calendar year 2012.
The UConn Foundation has raised more than $305 million in private donations since 1995 to benefit the University and substantially increase the size of the endowment, which currently stands at $209.1 million.