Mar 14, 2019 07:00 AM

In October 2017 the University of Illinois System officially launched a comprehensive fundraising initiative with an ambitious $3.1 billion goal. Now, less than a year and a half into the public campaigns, the U of I System has surpassed the $2 billion mark—or 64.8%—in funds raised toward this goal.  

More than 192,000 donors have already contributed to the success of this fundraising initiative that is built on unique and individual campaigns for each of the U of I System’s universities in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago, and Springfield.

“We are incredibly grateful for the alumni, friends, corporations, and foundations who have supported our extraordinary universities during this initiative,” said James H. Moore, Jr., president and CEO of the University of Illinois Foundation. “It is a tremendous achievement to have reached the $2 billion mark in the campaign, but our work is not done. The development staffs at all our universities continue to work diligently so that we maintain our momentum and reach our goal during 2022.”

With Illinois” the campaign for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has raised $1.555 billion (69.1%) of its $2.25 billion goal. “Nearly half of the funds committed so far With Illinois have been endowed gifts,” said Robert J. Jones, chancellor at Illinois. “These gifts will span generations and open countless opportunities for families, students, and faculty members for decades to come. These are visionary investments in our collective future and they are critical to the sustained excellence of this University.”

IGNITE” the campaign for the University of Illinois at Chicago has raised $404.1 million (53.8%) toward its goal of $750 million. “UIC could not achieve the momentum we are experiencing today without the tremendous generosity of those alumni, friends, and organizations that have committed to supporting students, driving discovery, empowering faculty, and connecting to communities. We are grateful for their contributions, which enhance the excellence of our institution and empower us to forge the future of public higher education in Chicago and beyond,” said Michael Amiridis, chancellor at UIC.

Reaching Stellar” the campaign for the University of Illinois at Springfield has raised $26.5 million (66.2%) toward its $40 million goal. “We are thrilled and appreciative that so many UIS alumni and friends have already committed two-thirds of the gift funds needed to achieve our Reaching Stellar campaign priorities: Scholarships, Academic Excellence, Lincoln Studies, The Public Good, and Facilities and Technology. This level of philanthropic generosity demonstrates our donors' confidence in the University's important role in improving local, regional and global communities. UIS’ service to our students and society will only be enhanced by achieving our campaign goal,” said Susan Koch, chancellor at UIS.

The University of Illinois Foundation has secured an additional $26.9 million for the UI Alumni Alliance, U of I System or the Foundation and these gifts are directed to support the universities. This figure, combined with the amounts raised by the three university campaigns, brings the total to over $2 billion as of March 14, 2019.

“Our ambitious goals for the future are all within reach thanks to the overwhelming generosity of our donors,” said Tim Killeen, president of the U of I System. “Their commitment will lift our universities to new levels of excellence that will pay dividends for generations to come, supporting the students, faculty, facilities and research discovery that are the keys to progress and prosperity in the 21st century.”

The overall size of these campaigns ranks among the top tier in higher education fundraising. At the time of the public launch in 2017, the U of I System was among just eight public universities with goals greater than $3 billion. The campaigns are the first for the U of I System since Brilliant Futures, which topped its $2.25 billion goal when it ended in 2011.

“The University of Illinois System has a rich history of successful campaigns,” said Rick Darnell, senior vice president for campaigns, marketing, and communications. “Our alumni and friends are among the most generous donors investing in higher education in the nation. To say we are excited about the future is an understatement.” The U of I System ranks 12th in the Voluntary Support for Education Survey (VSE) reporting of the FY14-18 five-year average of cash totals for public university systems.

The University of Illinois System is supporting these campaigns with a brand messaging platform called, “Altogether Extraordinary,” which showcases the demand, growth, and life-changing impact of the U of I System’s three, best-in-class universities.

To learn more about each of our three ambitious philanthropic campaigns focused on supporting students, world-class faculty, pioneering research and state-of-the-art facilities please visit:


With I | The Campaign for IllinoisIgnite | The Campaign for UICReaching Stellar | Campaign for the University of Illinois Springfield