University of Michigan Surpasses $5B Fundraising Campaign, Largest Among Public Institutions


The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor today announced it is the first public university to raise $5 billion. With nearly three months remaining in the Victors for Michigan campaign, more than 382,000 donors have given more than $5 billion — with more than $1.1 billion dedicated to student support, the campaign’s top priority.

Of the $1.1 billion raised for students, 93 percent directly supports undergraduate and graduate scholarships and fellowships, enabling the university to provide financial aid to more than two-thirds of its 46,000 students on the Ann Arbor campus.

More than $1.4 billion is directed to advance patient care, research and education at Michigan Medicine, which serves more than 2.3 million patient visits per year. The balance supports one of the nation’s largest research enterprises, programmatic and engaged learning opportunities, and state-of-the-art facilities across all 19 schools and colleges in Ann Arbor as well as UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint.

“The success of Victors for Michigan is further evidence of the power of the University of Michigan family, whose generosity makes excellence possible across the breadth of our three campuses and Michigan Medicine,” says Mark Schlissel, president of U-M. “I also thank President Emerita Mary Sue Coleman, who set a bold goal when she successfully launched the campaign publicly in 2013, and the members of our Board of Regents, whose enthusiastic support and leadership helped us reach this historic achievement.”

Leaders credit the success of the campaign to a network of more than 1,600 volunteers around the world.

“Without our volunteers who dedicate time and service to Michigan, we could not have achieved these amazing results,” says Stephen M. Ross, principal of The Related Cos. in New York, campaign chair, and its largest donor with gifts to the Ross School of Business and the Ross Athletic Campus. “I am thrilled with the broad base of support we’ve been able to secure through this campaign.”

Of more than 382,000 donors, 94 percent gave less than $5,000, and more than half made their first gift to U-M through the campaign. U-M students participated not only as recipients, but also as donors and fundraisers, with nearly 10,500 students giving more than $2.3 million. More than 2,000 faculty, staff, and retirees participated, as well.

“It has been my honor and privilege to bring people together to support the amazing work happening at U-M. I’m excited to see how much more impact we can create in the next three months,” says Rich Rogel, campaign co-chair and chair of both the Michigan Medicine portion of the campaign and the Global Student Support committee.

The Rogel Cancer Center was named in honor of Richard and Susan Rogel, who committed $150 million in March 2018.

The Victors for Michigan campaign publicly launched in 2013 with a goal of raising $4 billion — the highest fundraising goal for any public university at the time — for three broad priorities: student support, engaged learning, and bold ideas. Donors surpassed the $4 billion goal in April 2017 and continued to break giving records in the following two fiscal years.

Before concluding Dec. 31, 2018, the campaign has two upcoming milestones: a community-wide celebration Nov. 2 and Giving Blueday, a 24-hour day of giving Nov. 27.

Below is a sampling of some of the gifts to U-M:

Robotics: A gift from Ford Motor Co. to the College of Engineering will allow Ford to establish an on-campus research laboratory on one floor of the new building now under construction. The four-story, 140,000-square-foot robotics facility on North Campus will be known as the Ford Motor Co. Robotics Building. When the building opens, U-M will become one of an elite few universities with a dedicated robotics facility.

Creative writing: Chicago philanthropist Helen Zell made a donation to the University of Michigan College of Literature, Science, and the Arts to permanently fund the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program. The program has earned recognition as one of the top writing programs in the country.

Art and design: Donors Penny and E. Roe Stamps have helped to transform the school now known as the Penny W. Stamps School of Art and Design. Their support addressed an urgent need for universities to be affordable while fostering creativity and global citizenship in college students.

Pediatric brain cancer: Multiple donors worked together to establish the Chad Carr Pediatric Brain Tumor Center at the U-M Health System. An incurable brain tumor took the life of Chad Carr, the grandson of former U-M football coach Lloyd Carr, in 2015. The gifts assure the youngster’s name will be synonymous with research to fight the lethal pediatric brain cancer.

Architecture and urban planning: The late real estate developer A. Alfred Taubman helped to fund a sweeping renovation project designed to provide state-of-the-art facilities for the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, one of the nation’s leading programs on the built environment. Taubman died in 2015 at age 91.

Athletics and business: Stephen M. Ross made significant donations to Athletics and to the Stephen M. Ross School of Business designed to create contemporary spaces for the nearly 6,000 students who take courses at the U-M Stephen M. Ross School of Business and the 900-plus student athletes in all sports.

Cancer research and care: Richard and Susan Rogel are on a mission to boost innovative cancer research and develop the next generation of cancer pioneers with a commitment to the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center. The transformational gift will enable Michigan Medicine to draw on its collaborative research culture to drive cancer care forward. The center was renamed the Rogel Cancer Center in honor of the Rogels’ many years of giving and service.

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