USF Magazine Fall 2013

Volume 55 | Number 3


Changing Student Lives

Successful USF:Unstoppable Campaign will change lives for generations to come.

| USF Foundation

USF System President Judy Genshaft and 15 recipients of campaign-funded scholarships
Photo by Aimee Blodgett | USF News

In October of 2009, amid much hoopla and applause, the USF Cheerleading team and Herd of Thunder Marching Band came together for a special event in the Marshall Student Center. That night, the USF System officially embarked on a fundraising campaign historic in its ambition.

The first phase of the USF: Unstoppable Campaign came to a close at the end of June, surpassing its goal of $600 million with more than $621 million raised for the people and programs of the University of South Florida System. This successful conclusion is a showcase for the power of philanthropy and the love that alumni and friends have for the institutions of the USF System.

USF System President Judy Genshaft says the campaign has truly been a system-wide effort, and one that has lived up to its billing.

“We are so grateful to the many people throughout the Tampa Bay region and around the country who have supported the USF System through their gifts during this campaign,” she says. “They have made a tremendous difference in the lives of our students and our faculty and their generosity will benefit and impact our community in so many ways.”

USF: Unstoppable Facts

  • 143 Thousand Donors
  • $621 Million Raised Since 2005
  • $79 Million for Scholarships
  • $174 Million for USF Health
  • $41 Million for USF Athletics

The third campaign in the university’s history, Unstoppable has also been the most successful. The first campaign, Campaign USF, concluded in 1991 with $117 million raised to benefit USF. A decade later, the Great Achievements, Great Expectations Campaign concluded after raising just over twice that amount, $256 million.

The quiet phase of the USF: Unstoppable Campaign was launched four years later, in 2005. The name reflects both the celebrated history of USF and hope for a bright future for the entire USF System. Throughout its history, USF has overcome the naysayers to achieve great things, from the development of a top-flight medical school to a powerful athletics program. The campaign pays homage to and builds upon these achievements.

The USF: Unstoppable Campaign has thus far raised more than $79 million for student scholarships and $34 million for faculty chairs and professorships. In addition, benefactors to the campaign donated more than $335 million to support academic program enhancements, which impact both faculty and students through the creation of better opportunities for teaching, learning and research.

USF: Unstoppable Campaign Chair Les Muma says the academic focus of the campaign was not lost on USF’s many supporters.

“As chair of this campaign, I had the opportunity to meet with many, many donors who support the USF System,” says Muma. “Time and again I was struck by how their giving to USF was motivated by wanting to help students learn, faculty members teach and conduct research, and by their desire to see the impact their philanthropy makes on both individuals and the greater community. We are so thankful for the gifts of more than 143,000 donors who stepped forward to support USF.”

Before being awarded a McCorkle Academic Scholarship, Hiram Rios was working up to 50 hours a week to finance his USF education. Thanks to the campaign-funded scholarship, Rios was able to focus on his studies and become immersed in campus activities.

“In addition to studying, I had a lot more time for meaningful opportunities, such as meeting the British Ambassador and other diplomats when they came to campus. If it weren’t for the scholarship,” says the Honors College senior, “I would have been working during those visits.”

Hiram Rios
Photo by Bruce Cramer | Snavely Associates

A second McCorkle Scholarship for travel abroad allowed the economics and math major from Puerto Rico to travel to China for the summer, where as a Gilman and Boren Scholar, he studied Mandarin Chinese language, history and culture.

“Because of the scholarship, I didn’t have to work all summer. That made all the difference,” says Rios, who also is pursuing a minor in Mandarin Chinese language.

Also benefiting from the campaign has been USF Health, including the Morsani College of Medicine, and the USF Colleges of Nursing, Public Health, Pharmacy and the School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences. Including the giving of Frank and Carol Morsani, which led to the naming of the Morsani College of Medicine and the construction of the Carol and Frank Morsani Center for Advanced Healthcare, more than $174 million was donated to USF Health.

Giving to USF Health led to the establishment of the SELECT Program, USF’s partnership with the Lehigh Valley Health Network, the growth of the USF Diabetes Center and the BRIDGE clinics serving at-risk youth in Tampa Bay.

The USF Athletics program raised more than $41 million during the campaign, with many of the gifts designated for new facilities. Now dotting the dramatically-altered athletics landscape are the Pam and Les Muma Basketball Center, the Corbett Soccer Stadium, the Gonzmart Family Plaza (connecting the new baseball and softball stadiums), the Chowdhari Golf Center, the Frank Morsani Football Practice Complex and the soon-to-be-constructed James Tennis Center, funded by a lead gift from Tom James.

Academic and campus life facilities were also supported by giving during the USF: Unstoppable Campaign. The nearly $140 million raised for facilities included the Patel Center for Global Solutions in Tampa and the Sembler Family Fountain and Plaza at the heart of USF St. Petersburg.

Joel Momberg, senior vice president for University Advancement and Alumni Affairs and CEO of the USF Foundation, sums up the gratitude of USF and the USF Foundation for the support of so many.

“The USF: Unstoppable Campaign, through the creation of facilities, endowments and academic enhancements, is not only changing lives for the better today, but will continue to do so far into the future,” says Momberg. “This campaign is strengthening USF in countless ways, as well as the entire community. The USF Foundation looks forward to continuing to work with our friends and partners to forge a stronger USF System for many years to come.”

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