The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Morgan Shiver, Contributor • June 20, 2024

University campaign reaches halfway milestone

As of Sept. 14, more than $385 million has been raised for SMU’s Second Century Campaign. After a two-year quiet phase, followed by a one-year public phase, President R. Gerald Turner says the campaign has generated 51 percent of the university’s goal.

Turner’s announcement came on Sept. 11 at the fall meeting of the SMU Board of Trustees.

Currently, SMU is expecting to reach $200 million in endowments for student quality, such as increasing the amount of scholarship offers, expanding study abroad opportunities and graduate study programs and developing new leadership programs.

So far, 185 new scholarships have been funded, including the Edwin L. Cox BBA Scholars and Palmer Scholars program in the Bobby B. Lyle School of Engineering.

The campaign is also looking to raise $350 million for faculty and academic excellence, including funding for research and graduate programs, and endowments for academic positions and various departments.

So far, contributions have added 12 new academic positions, bringing SMU’s total number of sustainability positions to 74, with a full-time faculty count of more than 600.

The third area still seeking more donations is the $200 million effort towards campus experience. According to the Sept. 14 press release, campus experience includes residential facilities, added services within the SMU Memorial Health Center and the Hegi Family Career Development Center, and an “enhanced competitiveness in athletic programs.”

The quiet phase of the SMU Unbridled: Second Century Campaign, beginning in early 2006, which targeted the university’s wealthiest and most loyal supporters, brought in the largest amount of contributions at $317 million in two years.

“Our donors have rallied around the goal of accelerating our advancement among the premier universities in the nation,” Turner said in the release.

“They want to make it possible for high-achieving students to attend SMU, be inspired by our talented faculty and develop as leaders through a unique campus experience.”

The largest contribution to date, according to Turner, is a $35 million donation from Nancy Ann and Ray L. Hunt to purchase property for campus development and future academic projects still to be determined.

Other donations have included a $33 million gift from the Meadows Foundation for the Meadows Museum and the Meadows School of the Arts, and a $20 million donation from Annette Caldwell and Harold C. Simmons to provide facilities for the Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development.

There have also been 55 donors offering $1 million or more contributions.

Other new developments include support for an expanded Sohmen Chinese Scholars Program allowing Chinese lawyers to pursue their post-graduate studies within SMU’s Dedman School of Law.

Current plans have the campaign concluding in May of 2013.

SMU’s previous campaign, A Time to Lead, ran from 1997-2002 and totaled $542 million, surpassing its goal of $300 million.

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