Philanthropy to ASU hits $413.7M in 2019

Business News | 13 Aug |

Sun Devil supporters bolstered scholarships, medical advancements, and research opportunities as part of a banner fundraising year for the ASU Foundation.

Nikki Hinshaw is one of more than 7,400 students who benefited from private scholarship support through the foundation to advance her learning opportunities. She received the Craig and Barbara Barrett Political Science Scholarship, which enabled her to study abroad and complete an internship in Washington, D.C., as she works toward dual degrees in political science and communications.

Without scholarships, she would not have been able to engage in these learning experiences that

require additional expenses including travel and lodging, she told ASU Now in February.

“I hope that (with the experiences), I’m able to make a bigger impact on my community and give back to others someday as well,” Hinshaw said.

This spirit of generosity from donors is what enabled the ASU Foundation to set a fundraising record for the fifth consecutive year. More than 101,500 individuals, corporations and foundations donated $413.7 million in fiscal year 2019, which is a 65% increase from fiscal year 2018. Of those, 25,520 were new donors.

“Our donors’ generosity provides life-changing experiences for our students and allows ASU to realize its aspirations as a world-class research university,” said ASU President Michael M. Crow. “ASU would not be the university it is today without the support of those who believe in the power of education to transform lives and our society and commit their resources to make that happen.”

Campaign ASU 2020 highlights for fiscal year 2019:

• While many students received scholarships, several even donated to scholarships to aid other students. A group of 42 donors, half of which are current students, worked together to establish the newly endowed James Madison Scholarship that will aid a second or third-year full-time law student in the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law who is also a member of the Federalist Society. In addition to creating new scholarships for law students, the scholarship encouraged 36 first-time donors to give to ASU students.

• Community-based businesses that benefited from private support include food truck and catering small businesses owned by women and underrepresented people. They have access to Prepped, a free early-stage food business incubator, through a collaboration with Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation and support from the College of Health Solutions.

• Students in the School of Earth and Space Exploration were able to send their payloads – including live bees – into space thanks to donors Cathy and Peter Swan. The students involved with this project traveled to west Texas in May to watch the launch and will use remote acoustic sensing technology to record the bees’ vibrations, pressures and orientation in space.

• Leo and Annette Beus donated $10 million toward the Beus Compact X-ray Free Electron Laser (CXFEL) Lab at ASU’s Biodesign Institute. The lab will house a CXFEL laser, which is the first-of-its-kind X-ray technology. Worldwide, there are only five X-ray Free Electron Lasers and researchers often have to wait as much as a year to use them. ASU’s compact version may provide accessibility that can lead to faster research and discovery for medicine, renewable energy and the computer industry.

• Charlene and J. Orin Edson donated $50 million to be split between the ASU Biodesign Institute and the Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation. The money is earmarked for the university’s multidisciplinary dementia research and to increase nursing education.

• Mike and Cindy Watts donated $30 million to advance the prosperity of Arizona communities such as Maryvale where the Watts grew up. Through a collaboration between community leaders and the university, the gift will enable embedded community services, strengthen entrepreneurial efforts and increase community engagement through the renamed Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions.

“We are tremendously grateful for the support given to us this fiscal year, money donated to support ASU’s vision for what higher education can and should be,” ASU Foundation CEO Gretchen Buhlig said. “Every gift is important, whether it’s $10, $100 or thousands of dollars. It all makes a tremendous impact on our students, faculty and the community.”

Campaign ASU 2020 publicly launched in January 2016 to raise the long-term fundraising capacity of the university and focuses on six priorities including student access and excellence, student success, the academic enterprise, discovery, creativity, innovation in our communities and Sun Devil competitiveness. The fundraising campaign is in its final year.

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