For the first time in its history, the University of North Florida has reached $10 million in outright gifts in a single fiscal year.
The announcement was made Thursday at the university’s Board of Trustees meeting as part of an update on the Access to Excellence capital campaign. In the fall of 2000, the University launched the three-year public phase of a comprehensive $65 million capital campaign, the largest philanthropic drive in Jacksonville’s history. To date the campaign has raised $58 million.
UNF Provost and Acting President A. David Kline said reaching the $10 million mark is an indication of the level of University support in the community. "I am gratified that alumni, friends and the business community continue to show their confidence in our educational leadership by contributing to this campaign. Their support is making a tremendous difference in the educational experience we can provide to our students," he said.
Pierre Allaire, vice president of Institutional Advancement, thanked the deans, the athletic director as well as the faculty, staff and the outstanding volunteers who have made the campaign successful to this point. "The volunteer support for UNF has made it possible for a relatively young university to achieve a noteworthy record of private support. It would be difficult to find any 29-year-old university in America that has exceeded this record," he said.
Allaire particularly praised the campaign co-chairs Ann and David Hicks, prominent Jacksonville leaders, who have led the campaign steering committee. "Their assistance has been invaluable to us in mobilizing community support during the campaign," he said.
The gift sending UNF over the $10 million mark for this fiscal year was made by TPC Charities which donated $50,000 to the University as part of The First Tee Program. The gift will allow the university to sponsor summer golf camps on campus for participants at The First Tee of Jacksonville and The First Tee of St. Johns County at UNF’s soon-to-open Hayt Golf Management Learning Center. The First Tee, a division of the World Golf Foundation, is dedicated to providing affordable golf access for everyone, especially kids, who otherwise might not have an opportunity to play the game. The First Tee headquarters is located at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine. The First Tee program not only exposes area youth to college campus life but also fulfills a University mission to undertake outreach programs in the community.
With four months remaining in the current fiscal year, Allaire noted that each additional gift will enhance UNF’s record of accomplishment. Prior to this year, the largest dollar amount in gifts recorded at the University was in 1998 when $8.9 million was raised.
The campaign has raised $22.2 million for scholarships, $8.5 million toward faculty enrichment, $15.6 million for program enhancement and $11.2 million for facilities and new equipment. It is expected to conclude December 31, 2003.
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