The Alumni Fund received $28.7 million in gifts from 30,815 contributors in fiscal year 1998--both records--as it embarked on a five-year campaign to raise $150 million.
These accomplishments were announced by Alumni Fund Director Joseph S. Collins at the Faculty Club on July 15. It was the third consecutive year in which a dollar mark had been established and the fifth year in a row in which the number of donors had increased to arecord level. The median gift was $100, with 56 percent of alumni/ae contributing that much or more.
Noting that the Institute could not depend upon government funding "to provide the margin of excellence" as it had in the past, President Charles M. Vest thanked the alumni/ae for rising to the challenge. He said that fund raising in the private sector had become "a campaign in a military sense, and this is the front line."
The year's fund raising successes were celebrated at a get-together for alumni/ae, staff, administrators and friends who nibbled on fresh fruit and slices of a celebration cake which had the words "Stunning Success" etched in icing.
Forty-three percent of undergraduate alumni/ae contributed to the Alumni Fund, with 16 percent contributing $500 or more. This was an 8 percent increase over 1997. This level of participation is gratifying, Mr. Collins said, because it is "the sole means used by US News and World Report to measure alumni/ae satisfaction."
A record 11,177 graduate alumni made contributions--a participation rate of 31 percent--making this the eighth consecutive year that the number of donors in this category has increased.
Non-alumni/ae parents contributed $225,000 to the Parents Fund. There were 838 donors in this category, 48 percent more than in 1997.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on September 12, 1998.