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With the announcement in December 1999 of an astounding $60 million contribution from Frank Batten Sr. (Col '50) to the Darden School, the Campaign for the University, one of the most ambitious fund-raising efforts ever undertaken by a public institution, reached its $1 billion target more than a year ahead of schedule. The success of the campaign has given the University the confidence to boldly plan the University's future and to envision ways to build on what our donors have enabled us to accomplish.

Lincoln Perry MuralLincoln Perry Mural VR Tour and Video

  Lincoln Perry, one of the nation's foremost figure painters, produced a nine-panel mural, called "The Student's Progress," which was installed this summer in Cabell Hall's lobby. The mural traces one student's progress through the University. Commissioned to celebrate the centennial of Old Cabel Hall, the work was made possible by a series of gifts from supporters of the arts at the University.  

What is most remarkable about the campaign is the sheer magnitude of the gifts the University has received this year. These gifts are making a dramatic impact on a score of programs, transforming local areas of excellence into centers of global preeminence. They also have a broad effect across the entire University, freeing up resources and space for faculty across the disciplines and ensuring that the University retains the broad knowledge base needed to fuel innovation.

The Batten gift–the largest single contribution in the University's history–provides an example of this: funds are earmarked for five endowed professorships, a 75 percent increase in endowed scholarship support, a fellows program to bring corporate executives to the Darden School, and a venture capital fund for students and faculty.

Rankings Put U.Va. on Top in Quality and Value

The most recent U.S. News & World Report rankings restored the University to its place as the nation's best public university, tying with the University of California at Berkeley. The University of Virginia is ranked twentieth among all national universities, public and private. On last year's list, U.Va. was twenty-second, two places below Berkeley.

As might be expected, many of the University's individual schools, departments, and programs did well in U.S. News surveys. This year, the School of Law and the McIntire School of Commerce ranked eighth in the nation, while the Darden School ranked eleventh. Business Week, in its annual survey, placed Darden ninth, up two spots from last year's review.

The University's strong academic record is one reason that it is widely recognized as a good value for students and their parents. This year, Kiplinger's Magazine ranked the University second among public colleges and universities in an analysis that combined quality, cost, and financial aid, while U.S. News & World Report placed the University in a first-place tie with the University of Texas for best value among public schools.
  • Other recent contributors to the Darden School include alumni Lawton W. Fitt (Darden '79), E. Thayer Bigelow (Darden '67), and Charles G. Duffy (Darden '87), each of whom has committed $1 million in unrestricted funds to Darden. During Reunions Weekend in June, Internet businessman U. Bertram Ellis Jr. (Col. '75, Darden '79) and his wife, Deborah Hicks Ellis, announced a pledge of $10 million to be divided equally between the Darden School and the College of Arts and Sciences. Last year, Ellis was a chief architect of e-summit@virginia.

  • Halsey M. Minor (Col '87), founder and chairman of CNET Inc., gave an unprecedented $25 million to arts and sciences to integrate digital technology with the humanities and social sciences in ways that promise to redefine a liberal arts education in the Internet Age. University President John T. Casteen III called Minor's gift extraordinary in its foresight. "His creative thinking and generosity will help us to infuse new ways of teaching and learning into our classrooms and our libraries so that we can play a key role in transforming higher education more broadly through innovative uses of digital technology."

    • Another gift that will elevate an already strong program to international eminence is the $20 million bequest for prostate cancer research from the estate of Paul Mellon. This is the largest gift in the history of the School of Medicine and the fourth largest for the University.

    • The Mellon estate also has provided the University Library with items from Paul Mellon's extensive collection of rare books and manuscripts, including Thomas Jefferson's most famous letter on the subject of slavery. "We have the wolf by the ear," wrote Jefferson in the 1820 letter on the Missouri Compromise, "and we can neither hold him nor safely let him go."

    • The McIntire School of Commerce received a $7.3 million gift of real-time financial data and information services from Bridge Information Systems. This award, the largest ever received by the school, will equip sixty-two financial workstations and allow students and faculty to develop portfolios, build financial models, and test ideas.

    • In arts and sciences, Frank H. Levinson (Grad '78, '80) and his wife, Wynnette, are giving $10 million over the next ten years to the astronomy department to help fund laboratory instrumentation, teaching initiatives, and fellowships. This will move the department toward its long-term goal of joining a major telescope consortium
    View of the Rotunda

  • Paul Tudor Jones II (Col '76) of Greenwich, Conn., founder of Tudor Investment Corp., has made a $10 million challenge gift for construction of a new research wing for Clark Hall, home of the Department of Environmental Sciences. The gift challenges the University to raise an additional $10 million for the department, including funds for endowed professorships, scholarships, fellowships, and field and laboratory equipment.

  • The department also will be strengthened by the creation of the Anheuser-Busch Coastal Research Center, established by a $1.2 million contribution from the Anheuser-Busch Foundation. The facility will support the department's Virginia Coast Reserve Long-Term Environmental Research program on the Eastern Shore. Combined with a $4.2 million, six-year grant from the National Science Foundation, the Anheuser-Busch grant brings the reserve to a new level of teaching, research, and community outreach.

Other record commitments were made this past year, many after the campaign target was reached.

  • Mr. and Mrs. William H. Goodwin Jr. of Richmond made a pledge of nearly $2.25 million to the Athletics Capital Campaign. A 1966 graduate of the Darden School, Goodwin is a member of the Board of Visitors.

  • An anonymous benefactor gave the School of Nursing its largest-ever outright gift, $1 million to endow the new Centennial Distinguished Professorship in Pediatric Nursing.

  • The University Health System received a $3.5 million bequest for cancer research from Florence Farrow of New York City, widow of University alumnus Joseph Helms Farrow (Col '26, Medicine '30). The gift will support a professorship in surgical oncology, the enhancement of library collections in cancer-related fields, and a fellowship fund for talented cancer researchers.

The Carl Smith Center: A New Home for the Hoos

When the University of Virginia football team filed onto the field at newly renovated Scott Stadium for the opening game of the 2000 season, the athletics program at the University entered a new era. The $86 million expansion project transformed the third-smallest stadium in the ACC to the third largest, with a seating capacity of 61,500. The stadium renovation, stimulated by an extraordinary $25 million gift from Carl W. Smith (Col '51), reflects the University's determination to be competitive in athletics as well as in academics. The expansion project was an impressive undertaking, requiring 760,000 new bricks, 49 miles of new telephone cable, and 72 columns, each weighing 18,000 pounds, for the pergola that serves as a stadium promenade.

Carl Smith Center

A Broad Base of Support
  • These generous gifts reflect the high regard for University programs on the part of alumni and friends. This shared sense of commitment to the University's mission accounts for its exceptionally broad donor base. More than 141,000 individuals from around the world contributed to the capital campaign. Among other significant contributions received this year:
  • In honor of his 35th year reunion, an anonymous donor from the College of Arts and Sciences class of 1965 made a $2 million planned gift to create a professorship in English and an unrestricted fund for the dean.
  • Through the good offices of James C. Slaughter (Col '49, Law '51), the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation has committed $2 million for the planned faculty and student center at the law school and $250,000 for the new Jewish studies program in arts and sciences.
  • The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation gave the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities a $1 million grant to support scholarly research based on digital primary resources.
  • A $1 million pledge from the Elis Olsson Memorial Foundation will support construction of the Tower Room Library in the engineering school's proposed information technology center.

    • Dr. John C. Risher (Med '36) and his wife, Anne, of Lynchburg, Va., have established a charitable lead unitrust that will yield $1.8 million to benefit the School of Medicine.
    • A $1.7 million gift from the estate of an anonymous donor from South Carolina, whose father was a School of Medicine alumnus, has endowed a named scholarship in the School of Medicine.
    • Through the efforts of trustee Virginia Shepherd, the Ward K. Ensminger Charitable Trust has made three contributions to the U.Va. Health System totaling $1.25 million.
    • Johnson & Johnson Medical Inc. has pledged $1 million to fund the Johnson & Johnson Medical Distinguished Professorship in Health Care Worker Safety.
    Student on Lawn

The Darden School
  • Dr. Wallace C. Nunley Sr. (Med ‘48) of Clifton Forge, Va., has established a charitable remainder unitrust valued at more than $1 million to create the Wallace C. Nunley Professorship in Family Practice in the School of Medicine.
  • In honor of their father, Gary L. Markel of Clearwater, Fl., and his brother Anthony (Col '64), have pledged $2 million to create the Markel Family Lounges in the President's Box in the new Scott Stadium.
  • With his wife, Cheryl, John D. Phillips of Atlanta has given more than $1 million to the Athletics Capital Campaign and the Jefferson Scholars Program.
  • Current and former members of the faculty have made generous provisions for the University in their estate plans. Thomas H. Estes, a professor of reading education in the Curry School's Department of Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Education, and his wife, Julie, have created a $2 million trust to endow a professorship and a fellowship in the Curry School. David W. Thompson, who retired from the McIntire School faculty as the Frank Kaulback Jr. Professor of Commerce, created a $2 million trust that will fund two professorships in accounting.

Building on Our Momentum

Even as the University celebrates its successes, much remains to be done. The Virginia 2020 Commissions have taken a close look at the issues that must be addressed if the University is to build outstanding programs in science and technology, international activities, the fine and performing arts, and public service and outreach. The commissions have outlined an ambitious plan for achievement in these areas.

The University must continue to build resources to recruit and retain distinguished scholars, to admit all qualified undergraduates regardless of their financial means, and to maintain the facilities and the technology necessary for first-rate teaching, scholarship, and student life.

The University has taken great strides forward. It is by any standard an eminent national institution. The challenge is to build on the momentum created by the Campaign for the University, to mobilize the high regard and enthusiasm of its friends and supporters, and to continue its upward trajectory as it serves the citizens of the Commonwealth, the nation, and the world.

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