Syracuse University Magazine

Chancellor's Message

Chancellor Cantor

If we were to write an epilogue for the now officially closed book on our Campaign for Syracuse University, it would read simply: “Unprecedented success.” The SU family showed its true colors—Orange, Orange, and Orange!—exceeding a goal that some thought too ambitious, rallying a total of 65,589 contributors, nearly 40 percent being first-time donors, from every corner of the United States and 65 nations, pushing the final tally to a stunning, and poetic, $1.044 billion. But the most powerful outcome of all is the impact that your outpouring of generosity already is having on our students and faculty.

For their part, our students are expressing profound gratitude with a “billion thanks” (campaign.syr.edu/thanks), including Bilal Bey ’13, a marketing management major among our inaugural class of Say Yes Scholars from Syracuse, who will be the first in his family to graduate college. “I’m beyond grateful,” says Bilal, citing the transformative experience of studying in Hong Kong through SU Abroad with giving him a “global advantage.” And just like the generations of SU alumni who rallied to support students like him, Bilal is committed to giving back, “to set a path for the younger generation.”

On that path right now is Kelsey Modica ’15, a French and international relations major from Mentor, Ohio, funded by a Howard and Louise Phanstiel Scholarship—one of 229 new endowed scholarships created under the campaign. She relishes community engagement, which is characteristic of all Phanstiel Scholars, who are from middle-class families pinched by economic stresses. Thanking the SU family “from the bottom of my heart,” Kelsey finds her love of SU encapsulated by “how my professors challenge me to push myself and be a better student and person every day.”

Someone doing just that with his own students is Dan Pacheco, an award-winning digital journalist whom we recruited to the Peter A. Horvitz Chair in Journalism Innovation, one of our 53 new endowed faculty positions. Pacheco joins the chorus of faculty members feeling firsthand the impact of the SU family’s generosity: “It gave me the courage to move from Boulder, Colorado, where I ran a successful eBook startup.… It was a sign that the University is serious about shaping the future of journalism in the digital age.”

Investments we’ve made in our academic infrastructure show just how seriously we do take the future. Our enhanced physical presence is anchoring academic innovation that brings the world to SU and SU to the world, whether through cutting-edge on-campus facilities, such as Newhouse 3 and the soon-to-be-opened Dineen Hall, along the Connective Corridor to the newly renovated Peck Hall, the Warehouse, and Near Westside, across the country from New York to Atlanta to L.A., or globally, from Santiago, Chile, to Istanbul, Turkey.

The book on the campaign may be closed, but it’s already inspiring our students and faculty to write compelling new chapters—perhaps as compelling as those of College of Arts and Sciences professor and author George Saunders G’88, recently named among Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world. All of this is owing to your generosity in sharing your gifts, talents, and energies every day and in myriad ways. A billion thanks to each and every one of you! You are truly amazing!

Cordially, 

Nancy Cantor

Chancellor and President