The University of Chicago News Office
July 10, 1995 Press Contact: Josh Schonwald
(773) 702-6421

University of Chicago Raises $511 million–Most Ever in Chicago Original Goal Reached A Year Ahead of Schedule Next Step: $650 Million

A $5 million challenge grant to develop a leading center of Korean studies and a $1 million gift from a prominent Chicago couple have pushed the University of Chicago’s largest-ever fundraising campaign over its original $500 million goal a full year ahead of schedule.

As of June 30, the Campaign had reached nearly $511 million.

The five-year Campaign for the Next Century began in 1991 and was scheduled to reach its original goal of $500 million by June 30, 1996. The campaign has been so successful that University Trustees voted earlier this year to increase its goal to $650 million to provide critically needed resources for the University.

“This enthusiastic support for the University is enormously gratifying,” said President Hugo Sonnenschein. “Increasing our Campaign goal to $650 million was a bold step. Our friends and alumni in Chicago and beyond are helping us meet that challenge with spectacular support over the last three months.”

Sonnenschein noted that half the contributions so far have come from Chicagoans. “A great city is not complete without the intellectual energy and excitement of a great university,” he said. “And a great university is vastly strengthened by being part of a great urban center that helps it attract the best faculty and students and exciting opportunities for scholarship. The University of Chicago was founded in large part through the generosity of prominent Chicagoans, and today’s leaders are ensuring that the University and the city will continue to benefit each other for generations to come.”

Campaign Chairman Harvey B. Plotnick said the campaign will now focus on three areas critical to the University’s future: endowed support for faculty positions, endowed support for student fellowships and scholarships, and funds for the construction of a new athletic center.

The University will be honored for fund-raising excellence this week by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education. The University is one of only six private research universities honored. The others are Harvard, Stanford, Duke, Columbia and Notre Dame.

Each year of the campaign, donations to the University have risen higher, with last year’s gifts surpassing $100 million for the first time in the University’s history. Most of the fundraising support has come from individual donors, who have donated more than $304 million through the campaign. More than $66 million of that total has been given by Trustees of the University.

The largest gifts to the campaign have come from the Richard Duchossois family, Mr. and Mrs. Jules F. Knapp and Irving B. Harris. The Duchossois gift is supporting the construction of the University’s new Duchossois Center for Advanced Medicine, the Knapps have supported the creation of the Jules F. Knapp Medical Research Center and the Gwen Knapp Center for Lupus and Immunology Research, and Irving Harris has provided support for the University’s Irving B. Harris School of Public Policy Studies. In addition, an anonymous donor has provided a large gift toward the construction of a new athletic center and swimming pool.

The new, $1 million gift is from Mr. and Mrs. Richard J. Franke. Franke is Chairman and CEO of John Nuveen and Company, Inc. and a University Trustee. Their gift will be used to support programs in the Humanities at the University. This is the Frankes’ second major gift to the campaign. They have also endowed the Barbara E. and Richard J. Franke Professorship in the Humanities, which is held by Professor Arjun Appadurai, Director of the Chicago Humanities Institute.

The new grants for Korean studies come from the Korea Foundation and from Jong-Hyon Chey, Chairman of Korea’s Sunkyong Group. They will be used to create three faculty positions to study Korea’s sociology, history and literature and to increase the University’s already impressive library of books on Korea.

Scholarship on Korea at the University dates to 1937, when the University of Chicago Press published the first book in the West on Korean land use. The commitment to Korean studies was enhanced in the mid-1980s when the University inaugurated Korean language studies and substantially strengthened its Korean collection in the University library, thanks to annual gifts from the Sunkyong Group.

Its growing library collections now number more than 10,000 volumes on Korean culture, history and economic and social development. The library also holds the fourth largest collection of Korean periodicals in the United States.
Last modified at 03:50 PM CST on Wednesday, June 14, 2000.

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