steve sartori
Lansing G. Baker, left, senior vice president for University Relations; Joseph O. Lampe '53, G'55, chair of the SU Board of Trustees; and Chancellor Kenneth A. Shaw cut a cake for University Relations staff to celebrate reaching the $300 million mark in the Commitment to Learning campaign.

The exact moment went unnoticed. Given the various streams from which money comes, the different ways gifts are recorded, and the oddities of timing, it’s impossible to say just when it happened. But sometime in late December, the Commitment to Learning campaign passed its initial fund-raising goal of $300 million.
      “We’re elated,” says Lansing G. Baker, senior vice president for University Relations. “This exceeds our greatest expectations. We set a goal that we knew was a challenge, that would require enormous work from our staff and tremendous support for our vision from alumni. We believed we would reach $300 million. Passing that goal was possible. But passing it one year in advance is a tribute to the extraordinary dedication of our donors.”
      Reaching the initial campaign goal doesn’t signal the campaign’s end, however. The campaign will continue through December 31, as the University attempts to reach more people wishing to support Syracuse’s vision of becoming the nation’s leading student-centered research university.
      Though the total dollar figure has been achieved, not every academic and student-centered priority for the campaign has been met. According to Baker, that’s typical for such a campaign. Each school and college identified a set of initiatives to be funded by the campaign, many more than could have been fully funded by $300 million. For campaign purposes, those initiatives, along with University-wide priorities, were separated into four broad areas to which funds were targeted:
      • meeting student needs (scholarships, fellowships, grants, internships, cooperative learning ventures);
      • upgrading educational technologies (state-of-the-art classrooms, computer clusters, online research capabilities);
      • excelling in a competitive environment (endowed chairs and professorships, strengthened academic centers, lecture series, campus improvements); and
      • preparing for future needs, a catchall for additional priorities identified during the course of the campaign.
      As the campaign continues, the University is focusing on a few major endowment priorities: scholarships for undergraduates; greater faculty support; and new space needs—including the renovation of Carnegie Library, the construction of a new building for the School of Management, the expansion of the Center for Science and Technology, and the renovation of laboratories. “If we can more fully fund these important initiatives, the institution will be in great shape for the future,” Baker says.

To receive a free copy of Commitments, Syracuse University's newsletter about the Commitment to Learning campaign, please write or call Chris Beattie at 820 Comstock Avenue, Room 100, Syracuse, NY 13244-5040. Telephone: 315-443-2865. Those interested in making a gift should contact Lansing G. Baker, senior vice president for University Relations, at the same address and phone number.

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