Alumni reunion in Arizona: The recent gathering of alumni in Arizona included many members of the Dallas K. Beal Society. The society includes those who make bequests to Fredonia.
Many scholars: the annual Scholars Breakfast, hosted by the Fredonia College Foundation, brings together student scholarship recipients and scholarship donors during Family Weekend every year. Click for closeup>>
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Donations to SUNY Fredonia’s five-year capital campaign, “Doors to Success: the Campaign for Fredonia” are approaching $12 million, thanks to alumni and friends of the university who have — even amid uncertain economic times — given generously to the appeal.
The goal of the five-year drive — the largest and most ambitious ever waged by the university and the Fredonia College Foundation — is to raise $15 million by the end of 2011.
Proceeds will be allocated to fund scholarships, educational enrichment, academic program enhancement and cultural programming — all initiatives that benefit students during their SUNY Fredonia educational experience.
“Given the economy, I think that the level of support has been exceptionally strong,” said Dr. David Tiffany, executive director of the Fredonia College Foundation. “We are continuing to have conversations with individuals who have been hurt financially by the recession, but who are still committed to helping us reach the campaign goal by its target completion on Dec. 31, 2011.”
Indeed, this support for SUNY Fredonia and its students has already been expressed by several thousand donors in the form of gifts, pledges and bequest commitments that reached $11,300,000 at the end of August, Tiffany noted.
Donations have been received in all amounts, and all are deeply appreciated. More than two-dozen donors have given or pledged more than $100,000, and another 14 donors have added at least $50,000. Sixty-eight donors have given or pledged $10,000 or more, while 467 stepped forward with at least $1,000. Additionally, donations of under $1,000 have been made by several thousand alumni and friends.
As it had done in previous capital fund drives, the Carnahan-Jackson Foundation provided the lead gift to the current campaign that established the Carnahan-Jackson Center for Learning and Scholarship at Reed Library (read the article on the dedication>>).
Additional gifts of note that have already been utilized in a variety of ways have also been made to the campaign.
More than 100 students, from class years 1951-1961, formed the Georgiana von Tornow Endowment as a tribute to the beloved theatre and dance professor; she is now memorialized by the Marvel Theatre lobby that bears her name (read the articles>>). "Fifty years after the death of this cherished faculty member, her students rallied round to make this splendid endowment happen in her name, all for theatre arts student scholarships," said Karen West, senior director of development with University Advancement.
Though not an alumnus, Western New Yorker Robert Young provided funds for an endowment to benefit the School of Music as a tribute to his wife, who loved music.
Phyllis Willson, now 92 and still a very generous alumna known for a high level of enthusiasm, has done several charitable gift annuities to benefit the foundation.
The Phyllis and Lawrence Patrie Endowment for the Sciences was established by the couple’s daughter, Joan, in honor of her father, a longtime science teacher who retired in 1973, and mother, who taught at the Campus School. Ms. West explained, “Joan said to me that it warmed her heart to have her father’s and mother’s names acknowledged in public as part of the science initiative, knowing that her father had been gone for 30 years."
“We are happy to be this far along in the campaign, especially considering the economy," West added. "We have had heart-felt support from alumni and friends, but we need more participation.”
Toward that end, all members of the Foundation’s Development Team will be “extremely busy” in the months ahead, Tiffany explained. Part of the campaign’s success can be attributed to a significant increase in visits with donors and prospects. More than 1,000 significant contacts with donors and prospects were made in 2009-2010 – a significant increase of 26 percent over the 815 contacts made in the prior year.
“We were going full out last year, and will continue that right through the end of the campaign,” Tiffany said. The campaign’s Joint Steering Committee, chaired by David Carnahan, meets every month with the University Advancement team. “Mr. Carnahan has been very active in assisting with the campaign and deserves a lot of credit for assuring that we are constantly focused on the goal,” Tiffany said.
The largest portion of a fully-funded campaign, $7.5 million, will be earmarked for new scholarships to assist students who demonstrate financial need, thus ensuring that SUNY Fredonia remains accessible to the best and brightest students.
Enrichment of educational opportunities via guest speakers, international educational opportunities, internship experiences and travel will be expanded by the allocation of $2.5 million. Another $2.5 million is to be dedicated to strengthening academic programs by attracting the most talented faculty available, purchasing instructional and laboratory equipment and enhancing supportive organizations that benefit Daniel Reed Library and the university’s Academic Affairs divisions and athletic programs.
Cultural experiences will also be enhanced by the campaign proceeds, with $1.5 million allocated to improving facilities and strengthening programming in theater, dance, music and visual arts. The endowment will also support programming presented at Rockefeller Arts Center and Rosch Recital Hall, and open doors to wider and more diverse audiences.
The final appropriation, $1 million, will be set aside in an unrestricted account to allow the university to address immediate priorities.
The $15 million goal exceeds the $10.6 million generated in the previous capital campaign that ended in 2003.
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