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Penn State Fundraising Campaign Surpasses $1 Billion

by on April 16, 2019 4:30 AM

Penn State's ongoing fundraising campaign, "A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” has crossed the $1 billion mark, the university announced on Friday.

Launched in 2016, the campaign has a goal of $1.6 billion by the time it concludes on June 30, 2021. So with just over 55 percent of the timeline elapsed, "A Greater Penn State" has reached 63 percent of its goal.

The milestone also makes Penn State the 11th university nationwide to surpass $1 billion in three consecutive fundraising campaigns, joining Cornell, Harvard, Illinois, Johns Hopkins, Michigan, New York University, Penn, Stanford, Virginia and Washington.

“This is a very significant milestone that is a reflection of the generosity of our extended Penn State family combined with the commitment and efforts of our volunteers and our development staff,” said Rick Sokolov, campaign chair. “Our supporters have already accomplished something extraordinary with the ‘Greater Penn State’ campaign, and I look forward to continuing this momentum for the remainder of the campaign so we can provide even more resources to influence student success, faculty achievement, and programmatic excellence.”

Penn State's last two formal fundraising campaigns both lasted seven years, two years longer than the plan for the current campaign. “A Grand Destiny” raised $1.37 billion between 1996 and 2003 and “For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students,” secured $2.16 billion from 2007 to 2014.

"A Greater Penn State" focuses on three major categories related to the universities strategic plan. "Open Doors" has a $500 million goal centered on scholarships. "Create Transformative Experiences" supports a wide range of initiatives and opportunities such as study abroad programs, internships and student organizations with a $225 million goal. "Impact the World" will benefit efforts to address global issues in the areas of food and water, energy and health. 

The campaign also will benefit a variety of other initiatives and programs that don't fit squarely into those categories, such as advancing the arts and athletic facilities.

“Our land-grant mission demands that we keep our doors open to talented and ambitious undergraduates from every background, create the transformative experiences that allow our students and our faculty to fulfill their vast potential, and impact the world through meaningful research and outreach,” said Penn State President Eric Barron. “That’s what it will mean to be a ‘Greater Penn State’ in the years ahead, and I am profoundly grateful to the supporters who have been inspired to give by this commitment to serving the larger good as well as our students.”

See more about the campaign goals and initiatives they're supporting at

Geoff Rushton is managing editor for Contact him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter at @geoffrushton.
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