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Friday, September 24th, 2021

Gannon University launches $100 million comprehensive fundraising campaign

Gannon University President Keith Taylor, Ph.D. today announced the public launch of Believe. Inspire. Transform. Gannon’s Next Century – a bold $100 million comprehensive fundraising campaign to elevate the resources to advance the university’s mission.

The campaign, the most ambitious in the university’s nearly 100-year history, has been quietly gaining momentum. So far, the university has raised $60 million toward this campaign. 

"It is remarkable to think how far we’ve come since our founding and that in just a few short years in 2025 we will be celebrating our centennial anniversary," Taylor said. "Gannon University has flourished in its 100-year history and is increasingly becoming a place where our students believe in their possibilities and are inspired to pursue opportunities that lead them out into the world to transform lives."

The Believe. Inspire. Transform. Gannon’s Next Century campaign is composed of four overarching goals:

  • Enrich our student experience to ensure Gannon University remains a place where every dedicated student can participate fully and achieve their personal and professional aspirations no matter their socioeconomic status or background.
  • Foster academic excellence to provide support for exceptional faculty to engage with students in transformational learning experiences in order go out and make a difference in their communities and around the world.
  • Enhance our campus landscape to continue championing what an effective learning environment looks like for students through the next century. 
  • Leverage the Gannon Fund to best support the greatest needs and emerging priorities of the university, as well as provide students with immediate access to financial and educational resources that they depend on to be successful.

By achieving the goals of this campaign, the university will drive forward its mission of transforming students’ lives through high-quality, affordable educational experiences that make a difference for students and the communities they serve through generous donor support. 

As part of the campaign launch, the university also announced two scholarship challenge matches that will immediately propel its next century campaign by raising $4 million in endowed scholarships, thus aligning with its Mission to provide affordable, accessible education. 

First, as part of the Next Century Endowed Scholarship Challenge, the university’s Board of Trustees designated $1 million in funds to be used as a match for endowed scholarship gifts. 

This challenge will leverage $1 million in endowed scholarships as well as support additional students every year through merit and need-based scholarships for students on the Erie and Ruskin campuses.

Second, the Inspiration Scholarship Challenge will create a $1 million challenge match that will create an additional $1 million through donor contributions matched one to one.

Robert Barker ’72, Gannon Board of Trustees member and chair of the University Advancement committee, gifted $500,000 to the Inspiration Scholarship Challenge, as announced during the event today. The gift will create important momentum for the overall campaign initiative while incentivizing additional donor participation. 

Barker said Gannon’s campaign is an opportunity to take education to the next level.

"Our centennial campaign will provide the resources we need to continue fully living out our Mission of transforming students’ lives through high-quality, affordable learning experiences," Barker said. "My hope through this campaign is that we can bolster our success-driven academic opportunities that have already equipped generations of alumni to live a life full of impact and to inspire the next generations of Gannon Knights to do the same."

Gannon’s Believe. Inspire. Transform. campaign capitalizes on its past century of success as a Catholic university and anchor institution in downtown Erie, Pa. 

Taylor cited the university’s recent campus enhancements as examples of this continued success. Just one week ago, the university celebrated the dedication of The Hatchery in the Institute for Health and Cyber Knowledge, or I-HACK. I-HACK opened earlier this spring to advance cyber education, followed shortly after by the reopening of Gannon’s renovated Mary, Seat of Wisdom Chapel.

In addition, Gannon has evolved in its 100-year history to become a nationally ranked university – a milestone that is driven by its growth in enrollment and extraordinary academic program offerings, as well as enhancements to the Erie campus and creation of the Ruskin, Fla. campus. The university is celebrating its highest enrollment ever this fall, welcoming more than 4,700 students from almost every state and 71 countries.

Barbara Beuscher, vice president of University Advancement, said it is a special time to be a part of the university as it moves into its next century and capitalizes on this continued success.

"Believe. Inspire. Transform. Gannon’s Next Century charts an ambitious course forward into our second century as we, too, look ahead with fierce optimism. It is a celebration of our century past and a call to build on our previous successes and promise of our Mission as we boldly move ahead," Beuscher said. "We’ve come a long way in our first century, and we can’t help but imagine something even greater for our next 100 years … We’re on the move, and now is the time to get involved and make an impact."

Join Gannon University in its campaign for the next century: campaign.gannon.edu

View the Believe. Inspire. Transform. Gannon’s Next Century campaign launch: facebook.com/gannonu