Campaign for Carolina and UNC Hussman surpass ambitious fundraising goals

Today the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill announced that the Campaign for Carolina, the University’s campus-wide fundraising drive that publicly launched in October 2017 and closes Dec. 31, 2022, has eclipsed the $4.25 billion milestone.

UNC Hussman has surpassed its $75 million goal with its most recent campaign numbers at more than $85 million raised from 3,450 donors.

Along with the State of North Carolina’s generous funding, donations from individuals and institutions are the lifeblood of Carolina. The generosity of individuals and private foundations made this momentous accomplishment possible. These gifts make Carolina the eighth public university in the U.S. to surpass $4 billion in a single campaign — and the only university in the history of the South to surpass $4.25 billion.

While the Campaign for Carolina has now met its overall goal, Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz said, the University still has work to do.

“We’re humbled and incredibly thankful for all the generous donors and volunteers who’ve brought us to this point and believe in Carolina Next: Innovations for Public Good. At the same time, we know goals remain if we’re to deliver a complete campaign on behalf of our students, our faculty and the people we serve in North Carolina and beyond.”

Guskiewicz said the campaign’s final months will focus on reaching a $1 billion goal for student support. As of Jan. 1, 2022, that total stands at more than $810 million and includes scholarship and fellowship support for graduate and professional students as well as undergraduate students.

“A lot has changed since the campaign began, but our commitment to student access and affordability has not,” Guskiewicz added. “We are committed to raising $1 billion to support our students — they represent the heart of our mission and the hope for our future. Additionally, we are committed to making sure every school and unit achieves their individual goals to support the important work they do.”

UNC Hussman fundraising priorities for the year ahead include graduate scholarships, the Curtis Media Center and fueling faculty innovation. 

Graduate students — master's and doctoral — have long held a strong presence in the school as top professionals and scholars drawn here to work with and learn from school's renowned faculty. After their graduate education, they move on to leading positions in industry and academia.

Another top priority for the school is support for the once-in-a-generation opportunity presented by the Curtis Media Center. Expected to be the leading education technology hub in the nation, the center features flexible and collaborative spaces for teaching, learning and experimenting where our students will prepare to lead and innovate through the next generation of the media and journalism professions. It stands adjacent to the school at the gateway to Polk Place from Cameron Avenue.

Hussman is also prioritizing its campaign goal for fueling faculty innovation with additional funds to support faculty as they continue to make an impact with the excellent teaching and scholarship that has established them as leading experts and national thought leaders. 

"We focus every day on providing the best learning experiences for our undergraduate and graduate students. Our faculty are internationally renowned thought leaders, teaching and conducting research in critically important areas such as political communication, health communication, media innovations, data journalism, and so much more,” said Heidi Hennink-Kaminski, interim dean and Hugh Morton Distinguished Professor at the school. “It is the support of our alumni and donors that enable us to reach the high standards we expect of our school. The success of this campaign helps ensure our tradition of excellence and leadership will continue for many decades to come.” 

Overall, more than 200,000 donors have contributed to the Campaign for Carolina, including more than 90,000 first-time donors. While the campaign has received 65 gifts of $10 million or more, 83% of donors have contributed $1,000 or less.
“The broad support of this campaign shows how deeply people care about the mission of our University,” Vice Chancellor of Development David S. Routh said. “We are incredibly grateful for each and every gift.”

The most ambitious fundraising campaign in the University’s history, the Campaign for Carolina was inspired by the Blueprint for Next, a vision document developed to guide Carolina’s growth and direction. Its two core tenets — “Of the Public, for the Public” and “Innovation Made Fundamental” — continue to guide the campaign under Chancellor Guskiewicz’s leadership. His administration’s strategic plan — Carolina Next: Innovations for Public Good — operationalizes the direction set by the Blueprint for Next.

“The impact of this campaign will echo for generations to come,” Guskiewicz said. “We already see many tangible effects on our campus such as new scholarships and fellowships, groundbreaking programs for our students, and state-of-the-art buildings and facilities that have been established since this campaign began.”

Many campaign commitments are already at work supporting Carolina’s key strategic priorities while some donors have made pledges that will pay out over time, providing a steady stream of resources. In addition, more than $1 billion in campaign commitments has been made through deferred giving vehicles such as bequests, meaning that the true impact of the Campaign for Carolina will be measured over decades.

“Our donors and the people of North Carolina have invested generously in the future of this University,” Routh said. “Their commitment ensures that Carolina will continue to serve as a leading center of discovery, education and service to improve lives throughout our state and the world.”