University launches bold $ 7 billion fundraising campaign


Acapella Pentatonix Group Helps Yale Launch Fundraising Campaign


Lucas Holter, collaborating photographer

On Saturday afternoon, the University publicly launched a fundraising campaign titled “For Humanity” with the goal of raising $ 7 billion to support a variety of scientific and leadership endeavors.

The event, which was hosted at the Schwarzman Center and broadcast virtually, featured speeches from University President Peter Salovey, the five campaign co-chairs and students from the David Geffen School of Drama and Yale College. The speakers discussed the importance of the new fundraising campaign for the future of the University and the dissemination of the impact of its research. According to the campaign’s website, it rests on four key pillars: the arts and humanities, scientific research, leadership culture and interdisciplinary collaboration.

“This day has been a long time coming and I cannot be happier that it has arrived,” Salovey said in her opening speech. “Today we write our chapter in the history of Yale and the question we must ask ourselves today is what is Yale for? … Yale is extraordinary today and investing in Yale’s future will pay major dividends, not only for Yale but for humanity.

The campaign has specific goals in the sciences, as well as broader goals for the campus community. The five specific areas of focus of the science and engineering campaign include data science and computer science, neuroscience, inflammation science, planetary solutions, and science and engineering. quantum. Yale also plans to invest in social science research, strengthen the university’s preeminence in the humanities, support faculty and students, and create a more inclusive campus community, Salovey said in a statement. previous conversation with the News.

The silent phase of the campaign, in which the University solicits donations from a small group of wealthy alumni, began in July 2018 and has already raised $ 3.5 billion, or half of the target value of the campaign. The silent phase reaped almost as much as the last fundraising campaign, which lasted from 2006 to 2011, reaped in total.

Donna Dubinsky ’77, one of the campaign’s five co-chairs, announced the goal of $ 7 billion, noting that it is the largest fundraising campaign ever for Yale – double the goal of the previous fundraising campaign – and “one of the biggest goals of the campaign.” peer institutions.

In her opening speech on Saturday, Salovey called on history to illustrate the importance of investing. He reflected on the University 100 years ago, in the fall of 1921, when students arrived on campus following World War I and Yale was also at a turning point.

“[Arriving students] experienced firsthand how Yale responds when world events call to help advance humanity, ”said Salovey. “From those uncertain days in the fall of 1921, Yale greatly expanded its contributions. “

Continuing his nod to history, Salovey spoke of the School of Nursing, established in 1923. “Today the school and its graduates are fighting for our lives,” he said. . The Sterling Memorial Library and Residential College System, “fundamental to the Yale experience,” as Salovey put it, were also built during these years.

“Each of us has a role to play in this campaign. said Salovey. “Each of us must answer the question I asked earlier: what are we destined for? In 100 years, when people look back on that moment, what will our legacy be? “

After Salovey’s speech, a number of faculty members as well as undergraduate and graduate students spoke about how the campaign will help them move their work forward.

In particular, the event highlighted research on dark matter, cancer and children’s mental development. The event also reflected the University’s response to the pandemic as an example of both the Yale community and the important scientific research Yalies has conducted throughout the pandemic.

“While the world was apart, Yale came together,” said a voice recounted in one of the pre-recorded videos of the event. “At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, staff and faculty devised solutions to protect the health of the campus community while fulfilling the academic mission of the University.”

After an hour of speeches and promotional videos, attendees were invited to attend virtual panels featuring faculty members and university affiliates, who explained in more detail the various goals of the campaign. The event ended with a virtual performance by Pentatonix, a famous acapella group of five.

Summarizing the campaign, Josh Bekenstein ’80, senior administrator of Yale Corporation and fundraising co-chair, spoke about the role Yale must play in finding solutions to global problems.

“We face urgent existential challenges, from climate change to global health crises,” he said. “Yale has the capacity and responsibility to address these and other challenges through basic research and scientific inquiry that can lead to breakthroughs and solutions. Bold discoveries require bold investments.

Dubinsky echoed this sentiment, saying the campaign was not about giving Yale “for Yale’s sake.”

“The goal of this campaign is to change the world,” Dubinsky said. “Faculty, students and staff [are] here to do important work and become the next generation of leaders and we are here to enable that work.

Harvard University’s most recent fundraising campaign set a more modest goal of $ 6.5 billion and ended the campaign with more than $ 9.6 billion.


Philip Mousavizadeh covers the Jackson Institute. He is a freshman at Trumbull College studying ethics, politics, and economics.

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