The Campaign for MIT is approaching the one-year mark with an extraordinary tale of early success. As of August 21, the Campaign fund total stood at $991.7 million, almost two-thirds of the way to the $1.5 billion goal. The early success of the Campaign has surprised and delighted many at MIT, but the real credit for this tremendous achievement goes to all the alumni and friends of the Institute who have contributed so generously.
While dollar totals are important, the true measure of the Campaign’s success is the impact it has on the MIT of today and tomorrow. “The impact of this Campaign is already visible in the lives of our students and faculty and on the face of the campus itself,” says Chancellor Larry Bacow, who adds that the Campaign will provide the resources to keep MIT a world-class university.
Take undergraduate financial aid, for example, which is key to MIT’s ability to attract the best students regardless of their ability to pay. Alumni and friends have contributed $61 million to scholarships, which translates into approximately $2.7 million in new aid for fiscal year 2001. Those resources can supply the typical aid grant for about 168 promising young undergraduates.
Faculty are also enjoying the positive impact of the Campaign through contributions to professorships. To date, $104.5 million has come in for faculty support, including several newly established chairs like the Vitesse Professorship of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, recently awarded to Prof. Clifton Fonstad; the Newton Career Development Professorship of Neuroscience, recently awarded to Prof. Anthony Wagner; and the Carlton Professorship of Microeconomics, recently awarded to Prof. Franklin Fisher.
Another visible impact of the Campaign is building projects, which are crucial to the quality of campus life. “Thanks to the Campaign, we’ll break ground on the new MIT Sports and Fitness Center this fall,” says Bacow. “This facility will have an enormous impact on student life and community at MIT, because it will be the place where students, faculty, and staff will congregate to swim, play, and work out.” Providing places for the MIT community to meet on a casual basis is a key goal of every new building project, according to Bacow.
“The Campaign is helping to create an incredibly vibrant campus community,” says Bacow, who is thrilled with the progress of the Campaign so far. “It’s a wonderful force for positive change at MIT.”