|The Strategic Goals of the Campaign
This comprehensive look at the capital campaign outlines six strategic goals and examines the specific needs and recognition opportunities of all 24 schools, colleges, and units on campus.
Attracting and Supporting the Best Students
Stephan Singleton is no ordinary veterinary student. Besides caring for her mother, who was diagnosed recently with a brain aneurysm, and a sister that is 21 years younger, Singleton is president of the UGA student chapter of the American Veterinary Medical Association, works with many community service projects and has even been to South America to investigate the economic impact of foot and mouth disease in Chile, Uruguay and Brazil.
A Georgia Veterinary Scholar, Singleton recently won the prestigious Smith-Kilborne Foreign Animal Disease Scholarship, given to only one student annually from the 28 vet schools nationwide. Singleton is one of many UGA “Amazing Students” (www.uga.edu/amazing) who are at the core of UGA’s Archway to Excellence Campaign. UGA seeks $75 million to attract bright, determined and talented students. UGA must offer significant scholarship and fellowship funds to attract students like Singleton, who understands the importance of donor contributions to her own education. She said she hopes to give back to her school one day, so UGA can continue its climb to excellence, “producing future leaders for the world.” The resources provided through the Archway to Excellence Campaign will also provide funds for internships and service opportunities, the Honors Program, international initiatives and other academic programming. Strong graduate and professional programs, like Veterinary Medicine, Pharmacy and Law, are one hallmark of the best national research universities. Graduate and professional education are critically important to the role that UGA plays in this state, in terms of research and teaching support on campus and the long-term benefits that accrue to the state when more citizens hold advanced degrees. Such programs, on par with those at the best universities in America, must be one of UGA’s goals. For Singleton, who hopes to one day make a career combining public health and veterinary medicine, it is much more personal. “I have been taught by the best professors in the field of veterinary medicine,” she said. “The people in the College of Veterinary Medicine have been an extended family, offering support and encouragement in my tough times.”
Recruiting and Retaining Top Faculty
Reginald McKnight is not the English instructor who forced you to diagram sentences. He is UGA’s first Hamilton Holmes Professor, a new chair that honors the legacy of one of the two African Americans who integrated UGA in 1961. McKnight, an acclaimed author and winner of the Pushcart Prize, said, “It’s easy to teach writers to write, but nearly impossible to teach those who can’t.” The minds of modern students are often trapped in a labyrinth of GREs, LSATs, MCATs and future dollar signs, and it is a tribute to teachers like McKnight when those students shed their grade point pressures in pursuit of humanistic and artistic deliberation.
It is also precisely why UGA lured the author of two novels, three short story collections and two edited volumes to fill an academic chair that represents the university’s dedication to diversity and openness. For McKnight, the Holmes appointment is significant for both historical and personal reasons. “As a kid, I marveled at the courage of pioneers like Hamilton Holmes and Charlayne Hunter-Gault. Holding this chair is like rubbing elbows with the greats.” Through the Arch-way to Excellence Campaign, UGA seeks substantial increases in the numbers of endowed chairs, professorships and visiting scholars, as well as related academic department support funds. Enhancing the quality of the faculty is critical to attracting and stimulating excellent students.
Strengthening Programs to Serve the State and Beyond
All three facets of UGA’s mission — teaching, research and service — come into play at the Georgia Museum of Art, which also serves as Georgia’s state museum of art. With 97 percent of its holdings stored instead of exhibited, the Georgia Museum of Art is embarking on a $20 million project to construct a sparkling new wing. The conceptual plan, known as Phase II, will add 30,000 square feet of galleries, storage and preparation space. Phase II includes nine new galleries and a revitalized main entrance that opens to a plaza overlooking East Campus. The existing lobby will be expanded to connect the new wing and the current building, forming a gathering space for 400 people and wrapping around a sculpture garden (shown here).
Through the Georgia Museum of Art, and other university units such as the State Botanical Garden, UGA serves the state of Georgia in every dimension of its activities, including agribusiness and economic development. With attendance more than tripling at the Georgia Museum of Art in the past 10 years, its director, Bill Eiland, sees strengthening programs that serve the state and beyond as an opportunity to engage a series of communities with broad and diverse programming. “By charter, the collections of the Georgia Museum of Art belong to the people of the state of Georgia,” Eiland said. “Of that fact, we at the museum are most proud. Yet, in order to forge ahead, we depend on the goodwill and generosity of our friends and supporters. They are our lifeblood, our champions and our sustainers.”
Advancing the Quest for Knowledge and Achieving Pre-Eminence
The madtom species of catfish, once abundant in north Georgia rivers, has had its habitat destroyed by water pollution and the building of dams and reservoirs. UGA ecologists Seth Wenger and Bud Freeman, along with their students, have been testing the waters of the Etowah River while developing a rapid method to predict the impact of land use on streams, rivers and lakes. The research could improve the chances of threatened species like the madtoms. “The stream systems in northwest Georgia contain our most imperiled fishes and mussels,” said Freeman.
“Several of these counties are among the fastest-growing ones in the nation; thus the heat is on for these species and stream ecosystems.” UGA seeks $100 million through the Archway to Excellence Campaign to capitalize on the enormous potential in such areas as the environment, genomics, biomedical sciences, information technology and new media, leadership advancement and international affairs. UGA aims to reach the top ranks of American research universities and expand its established role in economic development, and Wenger and Freeman are leading the way. One practical result of their research could be a change in the way the Army Corps of Engineers identifies mitigation sites for development that impacts the character of wetlands and streams. Under the Clean Water Act, a developer who affects the quality of such areas must find ways to offset the overall damage. Having a rapid method of finding the most sensitive streams could make the job easier and more accurate. It could also ensure a lot of very happy madtoms.
Enriching the Campus and Building the New Learning Environment
Searching for intercellular inclusion in human brain tissue on a $1 million transmission electron microscope is more than just a résumé builder for UGA students. It is the most modern approach for UGA researchers trying to figure out how inclusions develop and how they are processed by the brain. As humans get older, more inclusions develop, and UGA researchers want to know whether there is a relationship between the inclusions and the diseases that are common among the elderly.
Superior students and faculty require access to innovative and inspiring facilities for teaching and research, and UGA is dedicated to creating physical environments that support key programs and new initiatives. UGA must continuously modernize classrooms, laboratories and computing facilities, and, through the Archway to Excellence Campaign, seeks $70 million to strengthen the campus and build the new learning environment. While many departments at UGA prepare grants to upgrade their facilities with equipment like the transmission electron microscope, only a small percentage of those grants are funded. It is critical to student and faculty researchers to have private support to maintain state-of-the-art equipment and facilities. It is what keeps UGA on the leading edge among America’s major public research universities.
Ensuring Annual and Long-Term Unrestricted Support
Verner and Ethel Chaffin have had a long love affair with UGA, and their contributions to the law school and the dance department have made them an integral part of the university’s rise to national prominence. Verner Chaffin, Fuller E. Callaway Professor Emeritus, taught at the law school in 1957-89. “We have both benefited greatly, seeing the growth and the recognition both law and dance have received nationally,” Verner Chaffin said. “We are excited to be a part of that growth. Our gifts have been a great investment in the future of the state as well as the individuals who have directly benefited. This is such a great university, and we have been associated with it for so long that we feel like it is our extended family.” Ethel Chaffin agreed.
She established the Verner E. Chaffin Professorship of Fiduciary Law to honor her husband, and has been supportive of UGA’s Core Concert Dance Company. “I can’t put into words what these gifts have meant to me personally,” Ethel Chaffin said. “Our gifts to UGA have brought me much more pleasure than I have given. I’m a student of beauty and art and that is what has kept me alive. I believe that art is a necessary part of the human condition.” The university needs many more like the Chaffins to join in the Archway to Excellence Campaign. A strong endowment is a hallmark of a world-class institution, and it is no secret that UGA seriously lags behind the institutions it aspires to emulate. UGA students and faculty deserve the kind of support that students and faculty at other great institutions enjoy, and to date it has not been provided at the levels required or in line with the abilities of UGA’s support community. These gifts will allow UGA to be opportunistic, weather economic storms, provide flexibility for growth and invigorate programs across the missions of teaching, research and service. Private gifts are important to UGA and meaningful to donors like the Chaffins. “We both believe in the power of education,” said Ethel Chaffin, a former college dance instructor. “Your education doesn’t just stop after four years in college. You have to be prepared for a lifetime of learning.”
Total $500 million
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