Despite the widespread challenges presented by COVID-19 over the last year and a half, Abilene Christian University donors contributed financially to the mission of the university in record numbers for the fiscal year 2021 with $75.8 million in gifts, besting the previous record in 2014 of $49.8 million.
“Even in the midst of a pandemic – or perhaps because of the unique challenges of the pandemic – our donors saw a need and responded,” said Dr. Phil Schubert, president. “That kind of generosity is both inspiring and humbling, and we’re incredibly thankful.”
More than $90 million in campus construction and improvement projects are currently underway, and much of the 2021 giving was directed toward those: the renovation of Moody Coliseum, the construction of a new residence hall – Bullock Hall will open to students in August – and the facility upgrades that will establish the new Pat Boone Theatre.
“A year like this really provides momentum and an opportunity to bring other people along who see this great outpouring and want to join in,” said Jim Orr, vice president for advancement.
Gift giving records were also set in April on ACU’s Day of Giving when alumni, faculty, staff, students and friends contributed $670,000 through more than 1,450 individual gifts – the greatest number given in a single day to the university in its 115-year history.
The record level of giving in the past year marks the third year of increase, and could spur on even greater generosity in the future. Significant projects and fundraising needs lie ahead for fiscal year 2022 and beyond, including the 28,000-square-foot Science and Engineering Research Center located on the site of the former Taylor Elementary School. The SERC will enable ACU-sponsored research to reach new heights, providing dedicated spaces for research in chemistry, physics and engineering and housing ACU’s Nuclear Energy eXperimental Testing Laboratory.
“We hope and expect this is just the beginning of a wave of friends and alumni joining in ACU’s mission to educate students for Christian service and leadership throughout the world,” Schubert said. “Several exciting projects and opportunities are ahead of us, and we’re grateful to see the continued support and collaboration of our ACU community.”