Marking the second-best year in the university’s fundraising history, UC Santa Barbara raised $119 million in private gifts for fiscal year 2016. The generosity of donors propelled UCSB past its $1 billion goal for The Campaign for UC Santa Barbara and helped move the campus into a new era of fundraising.
The amount of private support for UCSB in 2016 surpassed the university’s annual goal of $100 million and reflects a more than 100 percent increase in annual fundraising since the campaign launch. The totals include gifts of cash and stock, gifts-in-kind, planned and estate gifts, and new pledges.
“We are deeply grateful for the resounding generosity of our supporters, alumni, parents, friends, community members, faculty and staff,” said UCSB Chancellor Henry T. Yang. “I also wish to thank Chairperson Lady Leslie Ridley-Tree and our UC Santa Barbara Foundation trustees for their shared vision, guidance and extraordinary philanthropic support to our campus in 2016. The remarkable contributions by our UC Santa Barbara community to the university provide crucial support for students, teaching and research, and underscore our commitment to access, innovation and excellence.”
Of the total amount raised in private gifts during the most recent fiscal year, approximately $35 million, or nearly 28 percent, was allocated by donors for endowed funds, boosting the university’s total endowment. UCSB’s endowment now stands close to $285 million, reflecting growth of 300 percent during the course of the campaign.
Gifts from individuals, including alumni, friends, parents, faculty and staff members, accounted for more than one-third — 36 percent altogether — of the total dollars raised. Another 36 percent came from foundations, while corporations made up 24 percent and 4 percent came from other organizations.
Support for students accounted for 10 percent of private gifts to UCSB in 2016. In total, more than $100 million has been raised for financial aid and other student awards during the campaign. The campus’s campaign efforts also resulted in $160 million raised for capital improvements, $500 million raised for programs and initiatives, and over $300 million raised to support research.
UCSB brought in a record-setting 14,200 gifts and new pledges in 2016, marking more than 250,000 donations to the campaign from 100,000 donors.
“Alumni engagement and philanthropy remains a top priority. Increasing the number of alumni donations has been challenging at an institution with a long history of state support,” said Beverly Colgate, UCSB’s associate vice chancellor for development. “With the ever-decreasing support from the state, the campus has been championing the importance of alumni engagement to our graduates.”
That message was bolstered throughout the 2016 fiscal year, by two unique initiatives in particular. UCSB’s first ever Give Day, a 24-hour online effort inspiring alumni to give, largely through social media, raised $3.7 million in one day. And UCSB First, a student organization dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of philanthropy to campus — as well as to raising funds to support student philanthropy — continued to grow and thrive.
Leadership gifts, defined as gifts of $1 million or more, have been the hallmark of The Campaign for UC Santa Barbara. The 2016 fiscal year included 25 such donations of at least $1 million, totaling $75 million altogether. This number is a significant increase over prior years and has created transformative funding for the campus.
Notable donations and commitments made to UCSB during the most recent fiscal year include: $10 million to establish an ocean solutions initiative at UCSB; $5 million to support brain research; a $7 million estate gift to support an endowed fund in physical sciences; and two major foundation gifts — $9 million to UCSB’s Solid State Lighting and Energy Efficiency Center, and $5 million for the campus-based Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics.