Though $55 million has already been gifted to the “Vision in Action” initiative, it appears as much as $30 million remains to be raised by the university by May 31, 2014.
ACU’s three new science facilities are expected to cost a total of $45 million – $30 million of which has already been donated by Kay Onstead, Kathy and David D. Halbert, and April and Mark Anthony – leaving $15 million to be raised.
The Wildcat Stadium is projected to cost $30 million – of which the Anthonys have already gifted $15 million.
Seven million of the donations from the Anthonys is set to benefit the College of Business Administration and $3 million in undesignated funds.
The university’s goal is to have the remaining funds secured by May 31, but that goal may not necessarily be reached.
The average amount of gifts raised by the university per year is about $14.7 million in the last five fiscal years.
The university’s policy set by the Board of Trustees is to raise the complete amount of funds before construction begins.
President Phil Schubert said if fundraising takes longer than expected, they’ll take whatever time they need to acquire the funds.
“We would not move forward with any construction plans or agreements with architecture and construction companies that are formally binding until we have secured the entire amount needed for both projects, or all projects,” Schubert said.
Billie Currey, interim vice president for advancement, said the university will not dip into its endowment fund of more than $300 million.
Fundraising has begun as key figures such as Dr. Schubert and advancement officers, called the “fundraising arm of the university” by Currey, are personally approaching prospective donors.
“Over the years we have identified friends and alumni we believe would be interested in this kind of project,” Currey said. “So our initial thrust is going to be to contact those individuals we have already identified as those prospects.”
In the past, there are foundations in the state of Texas who have also been generous to ACU and will hopefully contribute to the “Vision in Action” initiative, Currey said.
“Fundraising is an interesting process,” Schubert said. “I tell people that I kind of just show up and I’m merely a facilitator of what God has put on someone else’s heart to want to do. I love that part of my job, it’s amazing to be in the situations and conversations with people who are passionate about wanting to make a difference on this campus, because this place has meant so much to their lives in different ways.”
Currey said he hopes the excitement of the new facilities will encourage people who may not be interested in donating for a construction project to donate to another opportunity.
Funds are still being raised for ACU’s Partnering in the Journey Campaign, an effort that began two years ago to raise $50 million to create more scholarships for students. More than $26 million has been raised so far.
Currey said, “We hope our alumni and friends will respond either to a passion for new facilities or a passion to provide the assistance to our students so that they can attend and take advantage of what will happen inside those new facilities.”