Simic column

Laura C. Simic Senior Associate Vice President of Development and Campaign Director

Creighton's New Era a Springboard to the Future

Through the generosity of our alumni and friends, Creighton University has accomplished what our president, the Rev. John P. Schlegel, S.J., has termed the University's "second founding."

The extraordinary success of the WILLING TO LEAD campaign, which concluded at the end of fiscal year 2010 having raised $470 million in gifts and pledges on a $350 million goal, is unprecedented in the University's history.

Your support for Creighton's vision to be among the top Jesuit, Catholic universities in the United States has infused the University's academic mission with funding for hundreds of student scholarships, faculty and program support, and strategic campus expansion.

On behalf of today's and tomorrow's students, the University is most grateful for the commitment of our philanthropic partners, who now number more than 63,000. The fact that more than 30,000 of you are new donors is extremely gratifying.

Creighton's leadership knew from the outset that the campaign would not be a concluding event but a beginning, and the University has indeed embarked upon a new era of philanthropy through the springboard of the WILLING TO LEAD campaign.

Going forward, fueled by this momentum, Creighton will continue to secure philanthropic assistance for critical needs such as scholarships, faculty development and existing capital projects such as the Rasmussen Center, which will be dedicated to meeting students' well-being through fitness and recreation.

One of the University's top priorities is for annual, sustaining gifts that provide the current-use dollars so necessary for student financial aid and operating support. The University is firmly committed to continuing to admit students based upon performance, dedication and promise, and current economic conditions have made this funding essential if Creighton is to fulfill its commitment to access and affordability.

Robust philanthropy also will allow the University to attract and retain the faculty- mentors whose expertise, experience and values align with and advance Creighton's Jesuit, Catholic beliefs and culture.

Thank you for your generosity -- both now and in the future. The values imparted to students by a Creighton education are needed more than ever, and Creighton is relying on the philanthropic support of its alumni and friends to meet the immediate and critical opportunities that lie ahead.