Organization recognizes DU fundraising

By Adam Kelly | The Duquesne Duke

Duquesne has been selected as a recipient of a fundraising improvement award by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) for its efforts in raising money for the Advancing Our Legacy Capital Campaign, the biggest fundraising campaign in the university’s history.

John Plante, vice president of University advancement, said the $163.5 million the university raised was the largest amount of money that any fundraiser has grossed in school history.

An estimated 64,000 people donated, many of which are former alumni.

According to Plante, approximately $80 million of the money will go toward supporting academic programs such as endowed chairs and professorships, program start ups and anything else that would support the individual schools.

As a token to the alumni’s role in raising the money, $50 million dollars will go toward scholarships and financial aid under the title “legacy fund.”

Associate Vice President of Development of Alumni Relations James Miller, who led the fundraising campaign, said this is already being noticed.

“A vast majority of students are already benefiting from the legacy fund, which is the endowed scholarship portion of the fund,” Miller explained.

The remaining $30 million will go towards “student experience,” which Plante said includes a variety of improvements.

“The addition of the power center, renovations to academic space, student-life space and athletic facilities—that’s what made up the bulk of the $30 million,” Plante said.

“The institution has been noticed by both alumni and its friends.”

James Miller

According to Pam Russell, director of communications at CASE, Duquesne is one of three schools to receive the award under the category of Private Research and Doctoral Institutions. Clarkson University in New York and Texas Christian University (TCU) were the others.

A panel of judges is selected to review the nominees’ fundraising support and the pattern of growth or improvement in fundraising, Russell said.

“The schools chosen were honored for effectiveness and professionalism,” Russell said.

The CASE website says the judges also evaluated these schools based on their contributions to the total support figure and the impact of some of the larger gifts on the total support. Duquesne, Clarkson and Texas Christian University were the best in these categories.

As a result of the fundraising efforts that were recognized by CASE, Miller said Duquesne is moving in a very positive direction and people want to be a part of it.

“In the last decade, one of the things folks have seen is how the university has grown, both physically and academically,” Miller said. “The institution has been noticed by both alumni and its friends.”