2011-12 Donations and Pledges to UNC Wilmington Exceed $11.8 Million

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Alumni, students, friends, faculty/staff and other donors contributed more than $11.8 million in philanthropic gifts and pledges to the University of North Carolina Wilmington during fiscal year 2011-12 to support the university's academic, athletic, research and community outreach priorities.

Many of the university's supporters gave more in 2011-12 than during the previous year, which is significant given the status of the economy. Dollars contributed by students increased by more than 117 percent. Parents contributed more than $990,000, a 41 percent increase from fiscal year 2010-11. Gifts and pledges from faculty and staff totaled more than $217,000, a 7 percent increase. The number of alumni who made contributions to UNCW during the fiscal year went up by 5.71 percent.

"About 10,800 individual donors contributed to UNCW last year because they believe in our mission and share our values," said Chancellor Gary L. Miller. "They invested in our people - students, faculty and staff - and programs to enhance the journey of learning that UNCW excels at providing."

Philanthropic gifts to UNCW have the potential for far-reaching results, providing needed sources of funding for programs, faculty positions, student assistance, research and community outreach. As a public university, UNCW receives approximately 36 percent of its operating budget from the state, while the remainder comes from student tuition and fees, gifts from individual and corporate donors, foundations and grants for research and scholarship, and from other operating revenues.

Donors established two professorships, three fellowships and 23 scholarships during the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2012. Contributions to athletics increased by nearly $1 million. Gifts from foundations increased by more than 74 percent, and corporate giving went up by nearly 60 percent.

"We use support from our donors to focus on programs and academic areas that address issues and economic development initiatives critical to Southeastern North Carolina as well as communities across our state," Miller said.

Donors contributed to many areas across campus, including: marine biotechnology research, teacher and health professional preparation programs, and innovation and entrepreneurship activities.

"The Campaign for UNCW, the largest and most comprehensive fundraising effort in university history, increased donors' awareness about the importance of philanthropy at a state-supported institution", said Mary M. Gornto, UNCW's vice chancellor for University Advancement.

The fundraising campaign, held from July 2005 through January 2012, exceeded its $65 million goal by more than $1 million. Programs and services across campus benefited from the campaign, and donors clearly made a difference in the lives of students and the future of the university, Gornto said.

"Our donors responded very generously to the campaign, and they continued to give after its conclusion," she said. "We're grateful for their on-going support, which provides the 'margin of excellence' for all of our programs and initiatives."

2011-12 UNCW Fundraising Highlights

-  Two new professorships: The Lucy Ann Boddie Brewer Distinguished Professorship in Oncological Nursing, established by members of the Brewer and Boddie families of eastern North Carolina, and the Wendy and Dell Murphy Distinguished Professorship in Education, established by the couple. Wendy Murphy is a UNCW alumna and trustee.

- Harris Teeter completed a $350,000 pledge that supports the Student Recreation Center and its programs. Demand for the center's services increased significantly in recent years, and an expansion is under construction.

- Blue Cross Blue Shield contributed $100,000 to support a number of campus programs.

- The senior class raised more than $12,500, a 7 percent increase over the previous year and the second highest participation in UNCW history.  Members of the Class of 2011-2012 were inspired to give back to the area of campus that had the greatest impact on their experience.

Media contact:
Dana Fischetti, public relations manager, 910.508.3127 or fischettid@uncw.edu