The University announced this week that fundraising efforts had surpassed the Meliora Challenge campaign’s initial goal of $1.2 million. President Seligman and chair of the Board of Trustees Edmund A. Hajim made the announcement at the Board of Trustees’ annual retreat last week.
The Meliora Challenge is the largest fundraising campaign in UR history and the first comprehensive campaign—meaning it spans all of the schools within the University—since 1924. The campaign, which began less than four years ago, will be completed in June of 2016.
The campaign has aimed to collect donations from alumni, local businesses, families, University friends, trustees and students.
“Alumni have been a big part of the campaign,” said Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance and Chief Financial Officer Ron Paprocki. “We expect them to continue to be, but other University friends […] have been very generous,” he said.
The Meliora Challenge has raised funds to create 320 scholarships and 93 endowed professorships across different schools in the University. Many of these scholarships are already available to students, and many more are expected before the end of the campaign.
Golisano Children’s Hospital has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the campaign, costing over $650 million. Other buildings attributed to the challenge include LeChase Hall and Rettner Hall, both named after top donors.
University officials do not expect a decline in the rate of donations due to the announcement of the goal completion. When asked if donors would continue to donate at the same rate, Paprocki replied, “We certainly hope so. We have strong momentum and hope to sprint to the finish.
Current students at UR have already seen many of the effects from The Meliora Challenge and will continue to see them as the years progress. Eastman students have seen the renovation of Kodak Hall and the newest addition to the campus, Eastman East Wing and Hatch Recital Hall. “We hope to fund additional professorships and scholarships at Eastman as well,” Paprocki said.
The University emphasizes the importance of every gift making a difference in the campaign. “Each generation of students has benefited from philanthropic supports,” Paprocki said, “and each one has helped the next generation to benefit from a Rochester education.”
Sanguinetti is a member of
the class of 2015.