Clemson University marks record year of donations, capital campaign passes $900 million


CLEMSON — Clemson University experienced a record year in fundraising, enabling the school to exceed its annual goal and to surpass the $900 million mark in its current $1 billion capital campaign.

Private gifts to the university totaled $136.6 million for the 2014-15 fiscal year, bringing the multi-year “The Will to Lead” campaign’s total to $934 million toward the $1 billion goal.

The total raised this year includes $89.9 million in cash gifts, pledges and gifts-in-kind, $18 million in planned gifts and $59.7 million raised by IPTAY through its annual fund, cash and pledges for major gifts, and planned gifts to support athletics.

Highlights of the year included gifts of:

  • $3.3 million from James Kennedy for a waterfowl and wetlands conservation center,
  • $3 million from SCRA for the Watt Family Innovation Center,
  • $2.5 million from Leon J. “Bill” Hendrix, Jr. family and $2.5 million from Betty Poe for athletic facilities, and
  • $2.4 million from David and Lynette Snow for student outdoor recreation.

Other major gifts were $1.6 million from Moledex3D for CU-ICAR and $1.2 million from members of the Class of 1965 for scholarships.

“We are so grateful to all who have donated to the campaign, but we know that we still have much work to do and many unmet needs, so we can’t let up,” said President Jim Clements.

“This will make a difference in the lives of young people and in our state, region and world,” said Brian O’Rourke, associate vice president for Institutional Advancement.

“As we enter the home stretch of this capital campaign, we will rely heavily on our loyal alumni and all members of the Clemson Family to support generations of Tigers to come. We are working together to build Clemson, forever.”

More than 24,000 individuals made donations to the university during the fiscal year. Nearly 23 percent of the school’s alumni contributed, which remains one of the highest participation percentages among public universities in the nation.

“Because of the generous support of our Clemson family, alumni, parents and corporations, we have great momentum going into the final year of ‘The Will to Lead’ campaign,” said Trustee Smyth McKissick, who serves as chairman of the campaign. “I’m honored to serve alongside passionate volunteer leaders.

“We are grateful for the progress to date, and we know that Clemson is about exceeding goals. This is the fourth consecutive year our annual fundraising has exceeded $100 million, and private gifts are more critical than ever to the success of faculty, staff and students. In these final months of the campaign, I encourage every member of the Clemson family to participate in this extraordinary opportunity for Clemson University.”

In 2012, Clemson surpassed its original goal of raising $600 million in the campaign and extended the goal to $1 billion to support students and faculty with scholarships, professorships, facilities, technology and enhanced opportunities for learning and research.

Since the campaign was launched, 586 new scholarships and fellowships have been created, 113 new funds have been established for faculty initiatives, 528 new endowments have been established and numerous academic and athletic facilities are planned, under renovation or have been built.

“The Will to Lead” campaign has contributed $185 million in cash to the university’s endowment, including $23 million this fiscal year.

“We are very appreciative of the more than15,000 donors who have committed more than $59 million over the past year to support athletic scholarships, academic support services and facility initiatives,” said Davis Babb, chief executive officer of IPTAY. “This total is a combination of gifts to our annual fund, major gifts and planned giving efforts that have enabled our ‘one IPTAY’ enterprise to expand its scope.”


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