Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass Rising campaign raises more than $44 million this fiscal year

By Marie MacCune

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Daily Collegian File Photo

Daily Collegian File Photo

The UMass Rising campaign has raised more than $44 million this fiscal year, according to Vice Chancellor for Development and Alumni Relations and UMass Rising campaign director Mike Leto. Fundraising will end on June 30. 

A University press release said more than $1.25 million was donated by faculty and staff.

According to Leto, the campaign began in January 2010 and went through a quiet phase until the public launch last April.

“Inspiration came from the University’s desire to maximize its impact as the Commonwealth’s flagship campus and to reach new heights as a national leader in innovation and education,” he said.

Leto also said that the UMass Rising campaign will help accelerate the University’s achievements in some of today’s most pertinent fields. 

“We live in a rapidly changing world and we have an important role in not only how we prepare our students but also in pushing the boundaries in research, a sustainable economy and an inclusive society,” he said.

According to Leto, there are five focus areas that the money goes toward. There include Talented Students, First-Class Faculty, Research and Special Programs, Buildings and Infrastructure and UMass’ Annual Fund.

Leto also said that donations to the campaign come from a variety of sources such as alumni, parents, faculty and corporations. 

In terms of its overall funding, Leto said that “Since the campaign started, we have raised more than $244 million toward our $300 million goal. There are more than 72,000 donors to the campaign to date and all of their gifts are important.”

When asked about monumental donations, Leto said, “Monumental can be defined by impact such as the scholarships received by just one deserving student or it can be defined by the size of the gift. The campaign has received three eight-figure gifts to date that meet both of these definitions. Just a few days ago a $10,000,000 gift from Douglas and Diana Berthiaume to create a new center for entrepreneurship was announced.”

For the future, Leto hopes to see the successful completion of the campaign and to “continue to align private philanthropy with campus priories.”

“I also hope that the campaign will create greater awareness of the crucial role of private support among our students, alumni and friends in helping the University achieve even greater heights of achievement and success,” he said.

Marie MacCune can be reached at [email protected]

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