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The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill today announced $495 million in commitments in fiscal year 2016 (concluding June 30, 2016), marking the school’s best fundraising year in history and eclipsing fiscal year 2015’s previous record by nearly $50 million.

“Today’s results – the highest level of fundraising support in the University’s 222-year history – is a proud moment for Carolina,” said Chancellor Carol L. Folt. “To have achieved back-to-back record years speaks volumes about our donors’ incredible commitment. Their investment helps ensure that future generations of Tar Heels are equipped with the knowledge, resources and opportunities to leave their mark on North Carolina and the world.”

The best-year-ever performance is a result of generous contributions by nearly 68,000 donors. Contributions from 12 donors of $5 million or more accounted for $139 million of the $495 million total, with support ranging from student financial aid and merit scholarships to cancer care and library support. Commitments included:

  • A $10 million gift from Ken and Cheryl Williams to support promising, leading-edge cancer research at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center;
  • A $1 million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for Carolina Performing Arts to launch and develop the DisTIL (Discovery Through Iterative Learning) Fellowship Program;
  • A charitable commitment from alumnus Scott Douglas MacDonald to establish a community service scholarship and a community service fellowship program, both of which will support undergraduate students dedicated to public service;
  • A $7.5 million bequest from an anonymous donor and longtime supporter of the College of Arts and Sciences to create several distinguished professorships in the college’s communication and history departments;
  • A $1,050,000 grant from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to enable the Center for Community Capital to develop innovative strategies and solutions to help under-resourced communities become more vibrant and economically inclusive across the nation.

“We are profoundly grateful to our donors, whose steadfast support of the University’s teaching, research and public service mission has helped us reach this fundraising hallmark,” said David Routh, vice chancellor for university development.

The University received $447 million in commitments in fiscal year 2015.

Published August 19, 2016.