Date: 11th June 2012
The University of Illinois closed out its most ambitious fundraising campaign ever with gifts, commitments and pledges of nearly $2.43 billion for the Brilliant Futures Campaign. That is $179.6 million (8 percent) more than the announced goal of $2.25 billion; the campaign ran from July 1, 2003, through Dec. 31, 2011.
Donors designated $1.671 billion for the Urbana-Champaign campus, $675.9 million for the University of Illinois at Chicago, $28.7 million for the University of Illinois Springfield and $54 million for the U of I Foundation and University Administration purposes. The funds are used to support many areas, including student scholarships and fellowships, faculty support, academic programs, facilities, and research..
The Urbana campus shattered its $1.5 billion goal by more than $171 million. The $1.671 billion total is $141 million more than what all three campuses combined to raise during the last campaign, completed in 2000. UIC raised more than $675.9 million toward its lofty $650 million goal; that is more than double what it raised ($336 million) in the last campaign. UIS was credited with raising more than $700,000 over its $28 million goal. During the last campaign, UIS’s total was $15 million.
Sidney S. Micek, President of the University of Illinois Foundation
“Completing the Brilliant Futures Campaign is a huge accomplishment for the University,” said Sidney S. Micek, president of the University of Illinois Foundation. “When we launched the campaign, we talked about the ripple effect: how each gift will impact others. I think we accomplished that. We intentionally established a stretch goal because we wanted to challenge not only alumni, donors, and friends of the University, but also the faculty, deans, University and campus leadership, and the fundraising staff of the Foundation and the University. It is an incredible accomplishment that each campus exceeded its target goal.
“Private giving has become much more important to public higher education and that is why this campaign has been so critical for the University of Illinois. One of the many things I am most proud about during this campaign is that one of our goals was to engage more alumni and individuals in giving. More than 242,000 donors, including corporations and private foundations, made a gift during the campaign, as well as more than 137,000 new donors who had never given to the University prior to the campaign. That is impressive. Equally impressive is that nearly 400 donors made pledges and commitments of $1 million or above. That demonstrates how we appealed to people from all spectrums that are passionate about the University of Illinois.”
“Thanks to our generous alumni and friends, we exceeded one of the most ambitious fundraising goals ever tackled in higher education--amid one of the worst economic downturns in our nation’s history,” University of Illinois President Michael J. Hogan said. “It’s a testament to their deep passion for this great university, and the tireless work of our Foundation and University staff.
“Our donors are truly remarkable. Even before Brilliant Futures ended, they were stepping up again to support a new initiative that seeks to raise another $100 million over the next three years, providing scholarships that are so critical to help more students achieve their dreams.”
“The Brilliant Futures Campaign that the University and the Foundation have partnered together on has been critical for us,” said James Benson, chair of the Brilliant Futures Campaign’s executive steering committee and a member of the UIF Board of Directors. “The University of Illinois Foundation Board is proud to have taken a leadership role with this strategic initiative. The bottom line is that Illinois students and faculty members from all three campuses have been the beneficiaries of the campaign. Illinois has a tradition of excellence in higher education that must be a priority if the state and the country are to prosper in the future.
“The University of Illinois has always been a leader. That is part of our fabric and DNA. We grow and nurture the future entrepreneurs of technology. We develop tomorrow’s captains of industry. We train the future innovators in the health sciences fields. Our more than 600,000 living alumni are recognized all over the world for their expertise, their insatiable work ethic, and their commitment to make a difference,” Benson said.
Donors responded enthusiastically to the 8 1/2 year campaign as more than 242,000 individuals and non-individuals contributed to Brilliant Futures. Three hundred ninety-seven (397) donors made pledges and commitments of $1 million or above that totaled more than $1.449 billion. Twenty-six donors made gift commitments of $10 million or more that totaled more than $585 million.
Of the $2.43 billion raised, $1.651 billion was in the form of outright commitments and $778.3 million is in deferred gift arrangements. $1.477 billion has been designated for current use and $952.8 million is designated for endowments. $1.438 billion is from individuals and $991.3 million is from corporations/foundations/associations. To reach the final figure, the University averaged $782,140 a day in pledges and commitments over 3,106 days.
The Brilliant Futures Campaign is the largest in University history and one of the most ambitious in the history of higher education in the country. Currently there have been approximately 20 capital campaigns with a goal of more than $2 billion in higher education.
This was the third comprehensive capital campaign for the University of Illinois. The initial fundraising endeavor, Campaign for Illinois, exceeded its $100 million goal by raising $132 million between 1979 and 1984. The second effort, Campaign Illinois, was launched in 1991 with a goal of $1 billion. When that campaign closed on Dec. 31, 2000, gifts totaled $1.53 billion, making it one of the largest fundraising efforts conducted by a public university at that time.