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Largest-Ever UW Fundraising Campaign Nets $250M

Money Will Help Grow Endowed Positions

By
okandasan (CC-BY)

A University of Wisconsin-Madison fundraising challenge has exceeded expectations, with an endowment fund generating almost $250 million for professorships and chairs.

UW-Madison alumni John and Tashia Morgridge challenged other graduates to donate millions of dollars to help pay for privately funded endowed professorships and chairs. Alumni responded by donating $125 million.

The Morgridges will match those gifts, bringing the total to $250 million.

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Chemistry professor Judith Burstyn is the president of PROFS, a UW-Madison faculty organization. She said this windfall will help retain and attract faculty, which is important now since some are being lured elsewhere following major budget cuts to the university.

“The importance of retaining the best faculty and putting them in front of the students can’t be understated,” Burstyn said. “You’re getting the best people in the world in your field, and the inspiration they provide and the leadership they provide is tremendously important for the students.”

The donation is expected to fund 300 positions.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include original reporting.

Join the challenge. Goal: 500 gifts before June 27. Join the challenge.