Please consider downloading the latest version of Internet Explorer
to experience this site as intended.
Tools Search Main Menu

In Review

Campaign Tops Fundraising Goal Historic Meliora Challenge campaign raises more than $1.37 billion, exceeding initial goal.
campaignmainTHANK YOU! President and CEO Joel Seligman is joined by students in spelling out thanks to the more than 200,000 alumni, friends, faculty, staff, parents, and students who made gifts to The Meliora Challenge. (Photo: Adam Fenster)

The University is celebrating a milestone achievement this fall—the success of The Meliora Challenge, a $1.2 billion fundraising initiative.

The largest fundraising initiative in the University’s history, the effort serves as a platform for the University to achieve future goals, said Joel Seligman, president, CEO, and the G. Robert Witmer, Jr. University Professor.

“These accomplishments will help us ascend to the Next Level as one of the nation’s top research universities,” Seligman said. “We look forward to strengthening our national leadership in data science, neuromedicine, and clinical and translational research, and continuing to achieve excellence across the University—in undergraduate education, professional training, our health system, and the creative arts.”

As the Campaign came to a formal close on June 30, Advancement leaders announced a preliminary total of more than $1.37 billion, exceeding the goal set when the Campaign was publicly launched in 2011.

During this fall’s Meliora Weekend, October 6–9, the success of the Campaign, and what the effort means for the University community and Rochester’s future, will be highlighted. Additional celebratory events will occur throughout the coming year in select cities across the country.

campaignmainFaculty Support A total of 103 new professorships were established during The Meliora Challenge, nearly doubling the number of such positions at the University. The Campaign raised more than $426 million in faculty support, helping to enable the recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty across the University. (Photo: Steve Boerner)

Cochaired by University Trustees Cathy Minehan ’68 and Rich Handler ’83, the Campaign encompassed all aspects of the University, its schools, and programs. More than 200,000 alumni, friends, faculty, staff, parents, and students around the world made gifts to the University during the Campaign. Nearly every goal established for the Campaign was achieved. That includes support for student scholarships and faculty; facilities and infrastructure; and new academic initiatives.

As a major component of the Campaign, the Medical Center raised nearly $700 million for medical, nursing, and dental education, research, and patient care—almost $50 million more than its original goal.

Danny Wegman, chair of the University’s Board of Trustees, said the Campaign’s success has galvanized the University of Rochester family. “Together, we are transforming lives in Rochester and throughout the world.”

Larry Bloch ’75, a trustee who chairs the Advancement Committee, praised the combined efforts of donors and contributors as well as faculty and administrative leaders. “Our success is emblematic of a large and dedicated community of leaders and volunteers,” he said. “Their passion and enthusiasm for the University of Rochester is without bounds.”

campaignmainGolisano Children’s Hospital The new eight-story Golisano Children’s Hospital opened its doors in July 2015 to families like Danielle Scarborough, of Elba, New York, and her son, Hudson (above). A key part of the Medical Center’s component of The Meliora Challenge, the hospital is named for Paychex founder and philanthropist B. Thomas Golisano, who provided the lead gift of $20 million. The new hospital includes 52 private patient rooms and family-friendly spaces and designs to welcome parents and their children. The hospital is also the first children’s hospital in the country to house an integrated PET-MRI scanning system, a medical imaging system that reduces radiation exposure while allowing for two different types of measurement to be taken at the same time. A second phase of the hospital project, which includes a new pediatric intensive care unit and a suite of specialized operating rooms, is slated for completion in 2017. (Photo: Adam Fenster)

Thomas Farrell ’88, ’90W (MS), senior vice president for Advancement, said the success of the Campaign is a milestone for Rochester. He thanked cochairs Minehan and Handler, as well as “the generosity of all our trustees, volunteers, and University leaders whose efforts inspired and engaged so many others.”

campaignmainNew Initiatives The Campaign raised more than $430 million to support programmatic and academic initiatives in areas such as data science, the humanities, and the performing arts. In early 2017, a new building, Wegmans Hall, will open as the home of the Goergen Institute for Data Science, a growing field in which students are already pursuing degrees. The University also established a new Institute for Performing Arts and a new Humanities Center, where cultural historian Gerald Early (above) was the first guest lecturer. A professor of English and of African and Afro-American studies at Washington University in St. Louis, Early (center) spoke with Joan Shelley Rubin, the Dexter Perkins Professor in History and the acting director of the center, and President and CEO Joel Seligman before his presentation. (Photo: Adam Fenster)

“This moment marks the start of a new phase in the University of Rochester’s evolution, one that will be driven by the remarkable philanthropy and ongoing engagement, advocacy, and giving that has become an integral part of the culture of this institution,” he said.

For Seligman the Campaign’s success represents a new era for Rochester: “This is a historic moment for everyone who cares so deeply about this University and our future.”